I went with my husband to a basketball game on our anniversary. The downside of getting married in December to a man who referees high school basketball...every year your anniversary doesn't fall on a Sunday, there is a good chance you will skip celebrating your anniversary...change your plans to a lunch date...or go with him to his game. I don't particularly get into games I know nothing about either team or know no one on either team, so I downloaded the book before we left and read it while I
If I wouldn't have known better, I would have thought Gary was in my head...or she was actually writing our story about Hailey and not her own about Alex. Even though we are well beyond the grief/grieving stage, it was refreshing to read Gary's honesty about those initial feelings. To know I'm not he only mom to blame myself...that I let my husband down or that I failed my family. those feelings weighed me down at first and I thought I was crazy...guess either I'm not or Gary and I both are :-)
I loved her describing her experience with 10 verbs. I had to laugh through part of the Research chapter. Gary commented that there was a pattern she noticed to conversations with families that had children with Down syndrome...they will bring sunshine...make you a better person...enrich your life. She said she thought they had all drank a magic potion that caused them to say the same thing. I chuckled out loud when I read that part. I remember thinking the same thing! Gary then went onto say, "But within six months I learned I was wrong, more wrong than I had ever been. I guzzled that magic potion and can now say those words as fast as I can say my own name." After Hailey was first born, I would roll my eyes when people would tell me those things. Now, I find myself saying the exact same things.
I, too, get annoyed with questions that arise from ignorance, but of course, I try to not get too snippy or rude in my response because a mere two years ago....I was ignorant. I didn't know anything about Down syndrome.
Gary's book is of course, written from her perspective of raising her daughter, Alex. I think it is a perfect book for new parents of children with Down syndrome. I truly wished I would have read this book when Hailey was much younger, but before her heart surgery I refused to focus on anything other than her heart and her weight gain.
Thank you, Gary for sharing your story with others and for your honesty! I'm positive that I will continue to follow her daughter, Alex, and ask Gary for advice as I muddle through the years of parenting my little hurricane.