Friday, October 7, 2011

Between courage and envy

In this journey of giving birth and raising a child with Down syndrome, I have been giving the chance to see life from a different perspective. It truly is a gift, especially if before you lived life with your eyes half closed.

There is no doubt of who I was before, a person who was consumed by ignorance, pride and selfish motives and I didn’t have the courage to speak up for myself at times. I was a foolish old rug for others to wipe their dirty feet on.

Having a child like Ethan has forced me to widely open my eyes. I am still ignorant in my own ways as we all are and there is still some pride and selfishness inside of me as well. I am human after all.

But one thing I certainly do have now is courage. I am more outspoken and willing to put myself out there just to make a statement in regards to my son and others like him. But lately I wonder, have I pushed people away…  Are people annoyed by my antics as I demand respect for individuals like my son… why do people react so negatively to my pleas? And as I ponder those questions, the answer slowly reveals itself.

Jealousy.  Of course.
It’s not me… it’s them.

v Being courageous can be intimidating to those that do not have the courage. We look at superheroes in awe, because they are fictional characters. They posses powers we jokingly yet secretly wish we had.  If there was a real superhero flying through our skies and saving lives, others would be greatly intimidated and jealousy, like a wildfire, would spread.  Those envious people would proclaim, “They aren’t that great”, “I can do that better…”and so on.

I am far from ever being a superhero, but I do have courage.  It sets me apart from others who are clueless as to what my life calls for. I wish they knew of the difficulties I’ve had to face, the difficulties that Ethan has had to face, and the difficulties that will continue to arise.  I want others to see that what I do -I do for my son. Maybe others look at me and say to themselves “I could never do that…raise a child like hers…” Maybe there is guilt in their hearts for past decisions and if so, seeing my life unfold with so much pleasure must be hard.

I feel the tension, I hear the snickering, and I see the stares….  But I don’t have to be tense, snicker or stare to confidently stand up for my son.

Instead of being envious, I plea others to see my side.  I encourage others to be courageous enough to hold my hand and walk with me on this path instead of judging me.


**Internet is still down at home and still behind one entry ( I am blogging every day in the month of October for Down syndrome awareness month, 31 entries for 21 -31 for 21….)

***Where did this entry come from?:  I am clearly treated different at a certain place, and I willing to bet it has to do because of Ethan and how I openly talk and educate about his diagnosis and who he is. It is much easier to look the other way than to stand up for what is right, and it is so much easier to be envious than to reach out and offer support.

1 comment:

  1. Great post Erika! Ethan is blessed to have a Mom who will never stop fighting for him!


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