Friday, October 1, 2010

31 for 21: Is It Harder to Have a Child with DS?

I saw this article online in the NY Times and found it an interesting article. This is a question that can be answered multiple ways. The basic question, "Is It Harder To Have a Child with Down Syndrome?"

For us, it is not harder to simply have Osiyyah in our family. He is just another little person in our family. He has needs like any other child. He helps with chores. He contributes to the family. He communicates. He's just part of our family.

I have never once and I don't believe any one in our family has viewed it as "harder" since we have had Osiyyah in our family. In fact, it's quite the opposite, we feel blessed to have him in our family. He adds a whole other aspect to our family that is wonderful and our lives would be so dull without him and his funny personality.

Now, the question can go deeper, "Is it harder to raise a child with Down syndrome?" I think the answer to that can be two-fold: Yes & No. I wouldn't necessarily say it is harder to raise Osiyyah. Can it be more challenging at times? Certainly.

There has come a few "extras" with Osiyyah. "Extras" such as him having to have oxygen for the first 6 wks old his life. Did that slow us down? No, not really. We put that portable oxygen over our shoulder, with Osiyyah in the other arm and went about our daily life. Or, doing various therapies with him. But, since we've done his therapies at home for the most part, it's just part of our routine. Part of school-time or play-time. Or, just added into life. It's not hard, but it can be challenging.

Yes, Osiyyah learns some things at a slower pace than a lot of kids. Yes, at times you have to break down what's being said for him to understand if it's complicated (when he asks "what?" or "why?" or "how?" - yes, he really likes to ask questions even if he knows the answer, haha!).Yes, he's different.

Yes, a child with Down syndrome will learn, view life, communicate, & understand in different ways than other children at times. But, that's alright. So, we have to learn a long with Osiyyah in certain areas. Praise the Lord that He's given our family the opportunity to raise a child like Osiyyah.

Sure, there may be times when Osiyyah gets older when people may look down upon him because he has Down syndrome. But, that's on them. If they want to look down upon someone simply because God has created that person with a little something extra, they've got issues. There's nothing Osiyyah can do, except be included in our family and life like any other person. And we will be there for Osiyyah, by God's grace, to break down any stereotypes or people who may look down upon him.

So, what do you think of the question, "Is It Harder to Have a Child with Down Syndrome?"



Renee said...

No, it's not. People ask me if it's hard after they find out all the other Dx my son has in addition to DS. They go from perception of "Corky" to the perception of "heart break". It's neither. It is a rarely known fact that someone with DS can also have Autism. But it is not rarely occuring. The only thing that limits us is lack of awareness of dual diagnosis. That is why I blog this month.

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