Thank Goodness for Storytellers – Down syndrome Awareness Month 2015
I love a good story. I’m drawn to storytellers. So, it makes sense that I love reading. Being transported to another world and walking through adventure with a character on a page is not only fun, but opens a world of imagination.
I come from a family of readers. Listening to my son, now sixteen, read a book for the first time so many years ago, was pure pleasure, even when he mispronounced the main character’s name. We still laugh about it.
“Lousy went to the park.”
“Lousy?” I said. Standing at the kitchen sink, I dried my hands. I walked over to the couch and sat next to my boy, peering over his shoulder at the book. “Ahhh, her name is Louise.” He laughed, an elephant-sized belly laugh. I laughed, too.
He read early for his age and voraciously. Still does.
The other day, in a mad search for some missing black and white photos, I came across the journal I kept when I was pregnant with my daughter, Sofia. After propping myself up on my elbows against my bed, I read my words from over ten years ago. To say I was moved is an understatement. My conversations with God after finding out my daughter had Down syndrome were raw…but hopeful.
Reading page after page of my journal, one prayer was offered again and again – that my daughter would thrive… mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually. Who doesn’t want that for their child?
Sitting on my bed, I reflected how those prayers have been answered many times over…in time. They’re still being answered.
Sofia, like her brother, has always loved books. When she was three, I’d find her sitting cross-legged in the big book basket filled with children’s books in our living room.
She’d spend orbs of time flipping through the pages of one book after another. Over the years, we’ve spent countless hours reading books together – me reading, she listening.
But, something happened over the last year.
This summer I sat down to snuggle with her on the wicker sofa on our front porch, pillows piled all around. And…she read me a story. For the first time.
Sofia read to me.
What a pleasure to sit and be read a story…by my daughter.
It seemed a long time coming. But on this journey, I’ve learned that change happens. I’ve learned Sofia learns at her own pace. There is growth. And not just for her, but for me. Sometimes, I forget to breathe into the moment and enjoy the journey.
Often the biggest wins, worthy of the biggest celebrations, are those that are a long-time coming.
So today, I’m celebrating. My little girl can read me a story! I can curl up with her and just listen and imagine.
Thank goodness for storytellers!