Happiness Is….

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Happiness is a beautiful fall day and time off to enjoy it. Happiness is a hot cup of coffee, a great book and a comfy chair. Happiness is the birth of your children. Happiness for Lily is finding Elmo in the pages of her book, matching the right colors together, getting her puzzle piece to fit on the first try, hugging her friends and receiving one back, fitting all of her animals into her little toy barn, sneaking food to Molly when she thinks I am not looking.

Happiness is not Down Syndrome.

The most bizarre misconception about DS is that people with DS are always happy. I have lost count how many times I have heard this and most of the time it is the first thing people tell me about what they know of people with DS.

I will be honest, those of us with children that have DS find this to be most irritating. Speaking only for myself here, it feels like people are trying to give me a consolation prize. Almost to say that since you couldn’t win the ‘normal’ child at least they will always be happy and a joy for you. Whaaat????

What is really puzzling is to hear this from people who claim they used to work with people that have DS. There is no way someone who truly knows a person with DS can honestly think this. Unfortunately, DS does not give one super powers and does not alleviate the human condition of emotion.

Although I would love to spare my child the emotions of sadness, rejection, defeat, despair, heartache, etc, she wouldn’t be human without them and at the end of day, even people with Down syndrome are human. 🙂

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