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This is my boy. And I feel supremely proud of him. My child with Down syndrome.

 Disponible en Español aquí

I wasn’t planning on writing today. I have been holding tight these tears since the day I heard about Oklahoma’s tornado. I was trying to distract myself from the disaster when I got Super Glue Mom’s macaroni & cheese recipe in my email. I opened to find much more than just a recipe. Even the name of  her post was Homemade Mac & Cheese, it was actually a pray for Oklahoma. After reading it  I realized I’m not the only mother who relates so deeply to this kind of sad and unfair events that destroys families and their hearts.

It hit home today after picking up the kids from school. I felt blessed to have them with me, but even more so after my son Emir handed me his classroom’s goodbye video. This has been a wonderful year for him, for us; and after watching the video and all those pictures where he’s smiling with his typical friends and clearly feels part of the group, I felt extremely blessed.

These pictures are not lying. Emir has gotten so much from this school year that is hard to believe it almost done.

schoolbus

Last year when I decided to move to another city to give him the chance to have more opportunities of inclusion in this school, I knew in my heart it would be tough. He was a very shy guy who was usually scared around others, and who would always hide his face in his hands at new places or events.

I cried about my decision many times. I don’t usually write about tears or disappointment, but it doesn’t mean I don’t feel lost or scared many times. I’m the kind of person who gets stronger when challenged. But I’m also the mom who doesn’t want her children to get hurt by my good intentions of integrating them into a society that is not always willing to slow down for them.

So today, after an entire school year, I guess only God really knows all the effort we have put in to be here today. And my effort is minimal when compared to Emir’s passion for learning and his incomparable determination to show the world who he really is, every day.

ipad3

What else can I say about him, that little guy who is still 46″ at 9 years old, who is not yet speaking clearly but never gives up on talking? About the same once-shy boy who now greets everyone with pride, talks about his classmates and teachers at dinner time, and writes happy faces on his scribbles and repeats fearlessly “Good job Emir”? That’s my boy! And I feel supremely proud of him.

Picture taken by Mrs. Blanchard (1st grade Teacher - Pinewoods)

Picture taken by Mrs. Blanchard (1st grade Teacher – Pinewoods)

I can only feel blessed to have my kids with me, and to be surrounded by awesome people who believe in us.

Our prayers go to Oklahoma. Sometimes we forget to celebrate what we have until something really bad happens and reminds us to be grateful, to be faithful, to feel blessed.

Thanks Mrs. Tutton and Mrs. Blanchard for such an awesome 2012-2013 for Emir. 

Picture taken by Mrs. Blanchard (1st grade Teacher - Pinewoods)

Picture taken by Mrs. Blanchard (1st grade Teacher – Pinewoods)

Follow Emir and Ayelen’s adventures Living and Loving with Down syndrome on facebook and twitter. We blog in Spanish on www.elianatardio.com

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