Everybody poops and there was some sunshine

This post is actually about five posts in one. Bits and pieces of thoughts from this day and that day and retracing notes on scratch paper from work and home.

there’s a fire starting in my heart, reaching a fever pitch and it’s bringing me out the dark

Truth be told, I was going to write in honor of World Down Syndrome Awareness Day a couple of weeks ago. About how one diagnosis has changed my family’s world. About the darkness Scott and I found ourselves in one afternoon in the hospital nearly eight months ago.

Then, funny story.

I was planning the post in my mind when Zachary’s diaper exploded right after a meal when I was home alone with him. The shock of such a poopy sight all over his highchair made for one of those deer-in-headlight moments on my face, I’m sure. Within moments of sharing the yucky story on facebook (with none of the photos I took, be still, although this one is from the immediate and clean aftermath…), I had several of my Mommy friends sharing stories of poopy highchair experiences of their own, and the ones in the carseat and the crib.

You see, my baby poops just like any other baby. Even with the Big Bad Down Syndrome label.

throw your soul through every open door (Whoa) count your blessings to find what you look for (Whoa-uh) turn my sorrow into treasured gold

You see, he has messy diapers like any other (nearly) eight-month-old. He eats the same baby food. He rubs his eyes like most babies do when he’s sleepy. Just like other kids, he smiles a lot. And he cries his fair share through cranky moments, too.

And as his parents, we’ve shared a lot of experiences that other parents have, DS label and all. We fought our way, numbly and in a daze, through sleep deprivation. We learned the hard way not to leave a baby boy’s penis exposed without covering. I have playdates with friends and their babies and it’s not awkward or uncomfortable or even sad anymore. We scoop up each other’s babies, and I can’t speak for them, but I feel the same glorious love and motherly awesomeness when I see and hold their babies as I do with my own.

We probably think a lot more than other parents because of DS. We think about exercises and goals and physical therapy. Those are things most of our friends don’t consider.

I know I regret. Regret wasting my time making plans I had no business planning. And dreaming daydreams of things that aren’t that important.

And we worry. We worry about missing goals and lazy days of exercise. We sometimes, when our guard is down, worry about the future. That big, unpredictable scary series of tomorrows. Tomorrows of shorter life spans and unknown skills and achievements and delays. Tomorrows of teasing and confusion and the need to spend an entire lifetime “proving everybody wrong.” How sweet it would have been to have felt no need, no pressure… no DS.

But really, the majority of our lives are not spent thinking about our lives with Down Syndrome, but rather thinking of a life that has beautiful blue eyes, blonde wispy locks of hair and reaching, grabbing, exploring fingertips. A life that has taught us to live.

A co-worker used the “r” word in front of me last week. And it was the first time since Zack was born and I started following the Spread the Word to End the Word campaign that I haven’t felt the need to throw a fit and stand on my soapbox with a megahorn.

We have hibernated our long, cruel winter.

I guess the winter makes you laugh a little slower, makes you talk a little lower about the things you could not show her

And it’s been a long December and there’s reason to believe
Maybe this year will be better than the last
I can’t remember all the times I tried to tell myself
To hold on to these moments as they pass

And Spring is arriving, in teasing, agonizing glimpses here and there, but it is arriving nonetheless. Better late than never.

Between the budding flowers and green fields along my walks with Z-Man and the new job and everything that it brings with it, I am truly opening my eyes to everything around me.

The love given so beautifully and easily to me from my two guys. One who has given me the ultimate battle of my life so far and the greatest pride, welling up in a happy lump in my throat when I think of his purity, innocence, gorgeous giggles. Another who has fought the good fight with me every step of the way and who is the only person capable of making me feel so good at all of my jobs — mother, wife, manager, daughter, friend, woman, soul.
It almost feels like Scott and I are in our early days of dating again. We nuzzle together and send texts and leave little love notes. It’s pretty romantically gross, really.
There is more laughter in our house lately, and more love.
Love is a shelter in a raging storm
Love is peace in the middle of a war
And if we try to leave, may God send angels to guard the door
No, love is not a fight but it’s something worth fighting for

I can smell candles burning and the steaming cup of coffee in my hands.
I hear the background hum of a favorite ballad and a high-pitched squeal of delight.
I feel the warmth of muscular arms holding me tight, the warm breath from a good-morning kiss.
But what I see. Oh, such beautiful things.
Few things will ever compare to that big goofy, gumless grin that greets me after a long work day. Zack’s face just seems to explode with delight every single day. The 30 or so minutes that follow, although at his most tired time of the day, are so beautiful. My hair twisting in his fingers, his blue eyes searching my own.
So forgive my infrequent posts. I can’t offer you a glimpse into our lives every day any more, but I hope never to stop this blog.
I just need more time to see things in a quiet place far removed from everyone and everything. I need time to watch the cardinal that was dancing on my front porch this morning while I danced with my son to a bad 90’s song.
I need more time to laugh with my son and hug my husband so very tightly. Then, I can come here and share it all — the good, the bad and the ugly.
For now, I am so very happy.
And I think my two guys are pretty content as well.
Little darling, the smiles returning to the faces
Little darling, it seems like years since it’s been here

One thought on “Everybody poops and there was some sunshine

  1. Wendy Zack is very lucky to have you both as parents, you Are wonderful mom! I couldnt think of anybody better for zack. I know I cant say I know how you feel because I never experienced having children myself. But Wendy your doing an awesome job! Zack is going to do great, because he has the best parents in the world! Im always here for you if you ever need A shoulder to cry on I love you. You always been an inspiration to me!


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