Hailey's second year calmed down some. We still had appointments, but they had slowed down because fortunately she had been healthy. She was walking with assistance and gaining independence. We still had therapy frequently. That birthday was a celebration. The fear was gone. We found our niche in the Ds community and the dust had settled so to speak.
Year 3 was even better. Hailey was walking and exploring her world. Knock on wood, she was healthier than the year before with the help of allergy medicine. Hailey's speech started to improve and she was interacting more with her brothers. She was finding her niche in our family. Her 3rd birthday just was. We celebrated Hailey and where our family is.
That first year had me so scared and overwhelmed that I didn't think there would ever be a day that I didn't see Down syndrome in her face. I was afraid that every minute of every day would scream "I have a daughter with Down syndrome". I thought it would consume every thought and every activity that we did. I feared it would overtake our family. I was so scared that every part of Hailey's personality would revolve around Down syndrome.
The past two years have been much more relaxed (or I have chilled out and started to enjoy life more). I love seeing the personality that is emerging from that petite body. I have had several people comment how much personality is busting from this little girl. She is compassionate. She sobs when someone else is hurt or upset...almost more than she cries when she is hurt. She is nurturing. She still takes such good care of her babies. Feeding them, rocking them, singing to them and reading books to them.
She loves her family.
Just recently, I caught Hailey "introducing" all of her family members to her Doc doll and her bunny chair. One by one, she went through each picture announcing who it was and nodding at her "audience" and saying "right?" She is funny and inquisitive.
|Showing her "audience" her family|
She is funny, rotten, sassy and mischievous!
She is so much fun and so frustrating at the same time. But I can guarantee, when I look at this beautiful phase...Down syndrome is not what we see. We see our beautiful 3 year old...this face just screams Hailey!