October is Down Syndrome month.
"Down syndrome is a genetic condition that causes delays in physical and intellectual development. It occurs in one in every 691 live births. Individuals with Down syndrome have 47 chromosomes instead of the usual 46. It is the most frequently occurring chromosomal disorder. Down syndrome is not related to race, nationality, religion or socioeconomic status. The most important fact to know about individuals with Down syndrome is that they are more like others than they are different." From NADS.
Now that you know the facts, what does it mean to know and love someone with Down Syndrome.
Down Syndrome does cause some physical challenges -- low muscle tone which I need to remember at times when we are hiking and walking that sometimes her muscles have to work harder. Her fingers are short and stubby but she is learning to play the piano.
Down Syndrome does cause learning delays. She will talk non-stop and at times I forget that there was a time when she was delayed in speaking. For Miss K the biggest learning delay at this time is math. She just does not get math facts.
In many ways those with Down Syndrome are just like everyone else.
They have favourite things that they enjoy eating though with Miss K I think everything is her favourite but at the top of the list is mushrooms and shrimp.
They have a sense of humour thought Miss K was serious the other day when she asked, "may I drop school?" And the response was, "no."
Down Syndrome requires those around to have patience and a deep love knowing that this is what God has allowed into our lives to bless us.
Miss K you are a blessing.