We have a graduate in the house!Ok, so it’s a bit ridiculous to call her a graduate but it’s just a bit of fun at the end of the day. Last week Mini donned her imaginary robes and cap and graduated from her Little Owls Speech and Language group along with five other little girls, all of whom have Down syndrome.
At the very first Little Owls group, I remember feeling so nervous and despondent. I felt sorry for Mini and all the other kids, thinking that fate had dealt them a cruel blow by delivering this extra unwanted chromosome to their tiny cells. That was before my whole way of thinking about Down syndrome was changed, due in no part to Mini and her indefatigable zest for life. Uncertainty and doubt about her future have melted into the shadows as she shines brighter every single day and astounds me with her progress.
During the past two years my little owl has learned to sing and dance, learned nursery rhymes and how to count to ten, learned the virtue of patience (eh not really but the groundwork has been laid!) and how to sit still for longer than five minutes-a crucial skill if ever there was one!
We’ve received tips on feeding, language, how to address sensitivities, perform baby massage and met other mums and dads. It’s been a great support network and a fantastic place to watch our children grow and master new skills.
We’ve celebrated with the other parents as our kids have reached various milestones. There have been tears and smiles and it’s been such an amazing journey for our little ones and one hell of a foundation for us to build on for their bright futures. The little owls are ready to spread their wings now and pre school beckons for them all in September. Speech and language therapy sessions will be scheduled in the afternoons from now on.
I can’t believe how quickly these three years have zipped by. I’m very proud of our “big” little owl and all she has achieved and will continue to do!