Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Vote for Andrea and Reece's Rainbow!

Caden was fortunate to be born in the United States. He will have access to a quality education, to health care, to a community, to family, to love. He will be able to dream big dreams. But some kids with DS don't draw the long straw. In many countries, children with DS are abandoned in an orphanage. Then around the age of 5, they are transferred to an institution. Some are then chained to their beds, don't go outside, don't know the comfort of a hug. Many will die within 2 years of that transfer. I can't help but look at my son and imagine him living, and dying, like that.

This is why I will be voting in People Magazine's Reader's Choice Hero contest for Andrea Roberts. She has created an organization called Reece's Rainbow, named after her son with DS, to help these children from around the world find their forever families through adoption. Over 300 children are growing up loved, healthy, and happy because of Andrea's work.

Vote here daily until October 8. The $10,000 grand prize in Andrea's hands will literally save lives. I look at Caden and think "There but for the grace of God..."

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Heh heh heh

ksl.com - Boy with Down syndrome solves neighborhood crime

I love this story and can totally see Caden doing something like this one day...

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Caden turns five

No more baby. No more toddler. He is a boy. Caden is excited to be five and says that he is "growing up" with great flourish. I am so proud of him and madly in love.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Close My Eyes, Open My Heart

I love that Australia has a See the Person Week (see the person, not the disability) and I love how this song incorporates that with the lyric "Close my eyes, open my heart..." This 6 member band, Rudely Interrupted, has 5 members living with disabilities which gives the song much more impact. Caden believes he is a rock star already but clearly this video shows he CAN fulfill that dream!

Monday, April 19, 2010

26 things I learned while running 26.2 miles

1. Don't run a spring marathon that forces you to train during the worst winter in the last few decades (unless you really enjoy the treadmill).
2. Don't run a spring marathon in the Pollen Capital of the US, aka Virginia. We were so coated with pollen, we looked jaundiced at the end, covered in yellow grit.
3. Always check the inside of your socks very carefully before the race. After 26 miles, even a tiny string will leave an amazing blister.
4. Don't trust the race organizers to have enough energy gel and Gatorade for the duration of the event. Carry your own. We had none for the last 13 miles. Half the race with only water!
5. Don't trust race organizers who describe the course as "fairly flat with some rolling hills" if they are also ultra marathoners and have lost all perspective on what counts as a rolling hill.
6. Pee wherever you want. Those same out-of-touch-with-the-common-folk race organizers will not have enough portajohns. People were jumping in and out of the woods to do their business like antelope. One's level of modesty decreases as the level of pain/exhaustion increases.
7. Expect the event photographer to be planted at the hardest, most grueling part of the course to catch your pain and then post on his website for all to see. That's just rude.
8. Cover yourself in several layers of Glide or other anti-chafe balm. Parts of your body that don't normally touch will darn near light an ember after hours of rubbing together.
9. The couple wearing tie-dyed smiley face shirts and sparkly antenna headbands will run faster than you.
10. So will the crazy screaming lady with pink hair and a sequined miniskirt.
11. Not true for the veteran struggling but still running with the biggest flag he could find. Salute him when you pass.
12. The biggest motivator is your 4 year old son cheering "Go Mommy!" I nearly flew after hearing those words.
13. Wear a watch. Yep, blame those race organizers again for having not one time check on the course.
14. Who thinks a good idea would be to have the biggest climb of the race at mile 24? Apparently my awesome race organizers. I don't know these people, and yet I deeply detest them.
15. If you want the best beer in the entire world, run 26.2 miles for it first.
16. If you want the best massage in the entire world, schedule it for 2 days after that beer.
17. Pack an extra set of knees because yours will be lost on the downhills of the incredibly not-flat course.
18. Do not be demoralized when the oldest female entrant, aged 62, is already in the pizza tent when you cross the finish line.
19. Wear your medal. Why would they give it to you if you weren't expected to wear it? I'm going grocery shopping in my mine.
20. Ever ask a friend what your blind date looks like and get the answer "He's really nice"? Yeah, well, when someone describes a marathon course as "scenic", that's code for "You're better off running through the seven circles of Hell."
21. You might not have the energy to cry at the finish but tears will roll when your son hands you a certificate he made at school saying "Way to go, Mommy and Daddy! I am proud of you."
22. A good post-marathon recovery program does not include running a 10k two weeks later.
23. Take it easy on your stomach for the following few days. And maybe hang close to a bathroom too.
24. There is no greater inspiration for finishing such a monumental task than trying to live up to the efforts of your young son with special needs who always tries his best through every therapy, doctor visit, school day, etc no matter how hard it may be for him.
25. And he does it with a smile because he loves life.
26. What's your excuse, mom? I can't ask my son to work that hard and push himself if I'm not doing it too. I run for my son. Every step of every mile for Caden.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Alice can have her Wonderland....

.....I'll take Morgan's Wonderland. Check out this new amusement park opening up next month in San Antonio. It is billed as the first fully accessible park designed especially for individuals with special needs. Everything from wheelchair accessible rides to a sensory village to rest areas for service dogs, it seems they've thought of everything but more importantly everyONE. Woohoo! Go Texas!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Up to speed

So just to update on what we've been up to these last few months, here is a very brief and incomplete synopsis....Caden had scarlet fever, got eyeglasses (that he hates), and had his tonsils and adenoids removed. He goes to two preschools, one where he is the only child with special needs and one for the Early Intervention program where he also receives physical, occupational, and speech therapy. Privately I also take him to music therapy and additional speech and occupational therapy. He's also started soccer and Kinderdance, and we've started the transition process for his entry into kindergarten in the fall. My days seem to consist of chaffeuring him around to his various obligations. Heaven forbid that I do something crazy like find time for myself to train for a marathon (6 weeks away -agh!) Thus blogging fell by the wayside. My deepest apologies. Here's to finding time to share our crazy life with you!