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In voices…

June 12, 2010

The wonderful texture of this HEIRLOOM variety holds in the heat of summer…

Tasty baby leaves and a crunchy inner heart…

Amish Deer Tongue by West Coast Seeds…

Packed for 2010… $2.89 for Approx. 840 seeds…

Last week Little Gem and I went swimming…

There was a young man with Down’s Syndrome in the pool,

paddling around with his care worker…

At one point he jumped up out of the water,

twirled around like a porpoise,

and squealed with delight…

Little Gem said to me,

Look Mama,

He is SO happy…

When I was in elementary school in the 1970’s,

children with Down’s Syndrome were in segregated classrooms…

By the time I became a teacher in the same school district in the mid 1990’s,

I worked with a student with Down’s Syndrome who was completely integrated into our mainstream classroom…

By the time he left for high school,

after grade seven,

he could read fluently…

I have bitten my tongue and put down my finger guns,

time and time again,

when I overhear people talking about the burden of special needs children on THE system,

and society…

We have no clue about the gifts that just keep on giving despite our ignorance,

as we demand that doctors take away our chest pain,

and kidney failure,

with their prescriptions…

If you ever find yourself in the vicinity of a person with special needs,

pay attention to the sensations in your body,

and the voices in your head…

Because these so called burdens are the unsung healers of our times,

and they bill for free…

I remember Aaron in grade one

crying
hiding
sleeping among the coats

Stretching and twisting

his double jointed body
around the classroom

That year was such a blur
Kids fighting all the time

No one spoke English
it seemed
except for Aaron

and me

Only he spoke
one word at a time
while I ranted

and raved

Three years later
when he’s in grade four,
I am eight or nine months
with child
We see each other
He comes over and puts his hands

on my big balloon belly.

His little ears open

to listening

Aaron smiles

and looking up at me

says

two words this time

Lucky Baby

Yet if nothing else,

each time a new baby is born there is a possibility or reprieve…

Each child is a new being,

a potential prophet,

a new spiritual prince,

a new spark of light,

precipitated into the outer darkness.

Who are we to decide that it is hopeless???

— R. D. Laing

I don't mind, I don't care, as long as you're here...

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One Comment leave one →
  1. June 13, 2010 3:02 pm

    Well, that was beautiful and unexpected. I am always hesitant to visit an unknown blog that happens to mention “Down’s syndrome” because it’s often the last thing I want to read. But this was so worth it! Thank you for recognizing that our children are not just gifts for us, but for the whole of society. I can’t believe how blessed I am to parent a child with Down’s syndrome!

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