Thursday, October 2, 2014

Down syndrome Awareness Month - Day 2 Relationships

I remember worrying at the beginning about how Aubrey would form relationships with people.  What would her friendships look like?  Would it be hard for her to make friends with "typical" kids.  Would we have to "help" her make friends and bribe kids to be her friend?
Aubrey and Noah 2 1/2 years
Here is what I have learned in 6 years:
Relationships are hard for everybody at different points in life.  Sometimes friendships are easy and sometimes they take work and we aren't always gonna get along with everybody.

Aubrey and Woody 2 years
Love and family come so easy for this little girl!  She is a joyful blessing to us.  The daughter/sister relationship that we have with her are as strong and true as they are with all our daughters and with her sisters.  
Alice and Aubrey 3 1/2 years
 Her relationships will probably  take a little more understanding as she grows up, but they are really sweet right now.
Megan, Emelia and Aubrey 3 1/2 years
She has friends from all walks of life.  Old and young.  Hearing and deaf.  Typical and Special Needs.  Her love and friendship is so genuine and pure and a real teaching lesson for the rest of us.  There is no discrimination in her eyes.  

Hollanders and Smiths - Aubrey 5 years
 What I love about the kids in her life, is that they don't discriminate against her either.  She's just Aubrey to them and they don't SEE her disabilities or difference.  They just see a friend.  And that melts my heart more than anything else.  Seeing her with friends....doing what friends do.
Aubrey at preschool 3 years
She probably has the most diverse group of friends, that I couldn't have imagined and it never gets old hearing and seeing her friends.  
Noah and Aubrey 4 years
 She gets invited to birthday parties and tea parties and play dates.....just like other kids.  It sometimes means I have to help translate, but for the most part, her friendships are hers and they don't require translation.  Love speaks all languages and see no differences.

I worried about her transition to Kindergarten. I worried about her having friends and being part of a big class.  I need to learn to stop worrying.  While standing in line for pick up a couple weeks ago, I met another mom who has a boy in her class.  When our kids came out, they smiled at each other and the other mom asked her son if he knew Aubrey and he said, "yeah, we play on the playground all the time!"  And the teacher confirmed that they are peas in a pod and they do fist bumps at their lockers in the morning and they talk and joke all afternoon!  And  my heart melted right girl's got a real friend in school without any prearranged play dates or pairings.  Truth is, she has lots of friends without me trying to get her together with kids and it is just so sweet to see her blossoming and playing with other kids.
Noah and Aubrey 4 years
And this guy, Noah, he's a real favorite!  
His mom and I were due with them on the same day - though they were actually born 3 weeks apart.
Their friendships has been sweet from the very beginning....and I can't wait to see it grow.

I know that it won't always be easy and she's gonna grow and she will get her feelings hurt, but right now, we are living in the moment and enjoying all the friendships that she has made and enjoys and checking one less thing off the worry list.  Friendships are easy!

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