I remember worrying about Caden's future after getting his prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome. There were a lot of unknowns with his multiple health issues and I wasn't very familiar with life with an intellectual disability. I worried that our fast-paced world might leave my son behind and that he might miss out on a lot of experiences.
This morning well before dawn, I was startled awake by Caden yelling from his bedroom, "Mommy! Daddy! Come here, quick!" In a panic, I raced down the hallway to find him standing in the dark at his window.
"What's wrong?" I asked as I moved forward to make sure he wasn't injured, bleeding, vomiting, or suffering from any other scary nighttime malady.
"The moon!" he gushed, pointing outside. I took a peek and indeed, the moon was stunning. Nearly full and glowing like a huge spotlight in the sky, it illuminated our entire backyard. Though the scene was a daily familiarity, the bright darkness made the landscape appear foreign. It reminded me of old black and white negatives with the colors reversed so that images must be studied for a bit before they are recognized.
While I was sleeping to recharge for another busy day, Caden was the one catching an incredibly beautiful moment. And he wanted to share the world he was seeing with his mommy and daddy. Had I been awake first, I most certainly would not have given the moon its proper due if I had noticed it at all. Soon the sun would rise and our surroundings would return to normal. I stood at the window cherishing the fleeting vision.
I used to worry that Caden would miss out on a lot by not being able to keep up in a fast-paced world. He reminds me that sometimes that fast-paced world causes us to miss out on a lot. Thank you, son, for waking me up to the moon.
Happy Down Syndrome Awareness Month!