Saturday, March 21, 2009

March 21 - World Down Syndrome Day  

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"to acknowledge our community of people with Down Syndrome who have made such wonderful progress over the past decades" --from the World Down Syndrome Website

So...how did we celebrate Down Syndrome Day in Ukraine today?

We took our two new sons who have Down Syndrome to the MALL!

Okay.  So we stick out anyway.  We speak English.  We smile.  We had two kids in strollers (the only strollers in the mall...it seems that people use strollers OUTSIDE...not inside).  We went to the big MegaMarket grocery store first and we decided we wanted to see every aisle so off we went (MegaMarket is very much like WalMart).  Wow...a lot of people just stared at the boys.  Not in a bad way, but in a curious and surprised way.  Kind of like..."Oh, you can take THEM out to the store?"  :-)   And Micah is a hugger and kisser so anytime I would get close enough he would reach out and grab me and pull me down to him to give me a hug and get me to kiss him.  I mean, this happened a LOT.  So people saw that and when I would stand back up I caught LOTS of people eyeing us.  It was great!  Talk about AWARENESS training.  :0)

We had to go the meat counter and get some ground beef (yes, Ken, it's really beef ONLY).  It's a big glass case.  It started that one girl was helping us and peering down through the glass looking back and forth at the kids.  They wanted to see the meat so I pushed them right up to the glass so the girl had a good view of them.  By the time we stepped away from the counter, there were 4 girls all peering the glass, trying not to be obvious.  LOL!  And then there was more hugging and kissing.  :0)

We were in the bakery near the end of our grocery store trip and all the ladies there were just looking at the boys with such surprise!  Really surprised I think to see "this kind" of person out and about.  :-)  Customers and workers alike couldn't keep their eyes off the boys.  I loved watching them watch our boys.  Maybe they have become more aware.

We then went upstairs where there is a big McDonald's type play area only its HUGE.  You have to pay so there is a gate and attendants.  Very nice.  So I went in with Micah.  The parents just looked and looked.  Don't misunderstand.  It wasn't staring in a bad way.  Just curious and surprised.  It was very sweet really to see everyone noticing them and I would love to know what they were thinking.  

We went into a big toy store...more looks and staring.  More "awareness."  We had 2 taxi rides too.  More awareness.  The driver seemed real interested in them.  On the way home he watched them in the mirror and smiled.  He asked me their age and I told him.   He really seemed amazed by the boys.

So God, all the people who saw our boys today... please make them aware that you created this little guys just the way you wanted to and that they are very valuable to you and that they will become valuable to this society in Ukraine.  

Blessed be the Name of the Lord!

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8 comments: to “ March 21 - World Down Syndrome Day

  • Blake M.
    March 21, 2009 at 9:29 AM  

    I wish they would have a Down Syndrome Awareness Day here. It sounds cool. We miss you and can't wait to see you!!

  • MaryAnn
    March 21, 2009 at 10:44 AM  

    What a way to celebrate World Down Syndrome Day. God had it planned all along. Who knows how many minds and hearts were affected? Only HIM! PTL!

  • Malones
    March 21, 2009 at 3:14 PM  

    What a fun story!!! I could visualize the whole thing! I remember when I was in Russia with my triple amputee son in his stroller (oh, no!! NO SHOES!!!), people looked at HIM the same way, like, "You can take him out???". Too bad it wasn't Amputee Awareness Day!! LOL!!

    Missy
    Adopting Simon

  • Amy
    March 21, 2009 at 4:22 PM  

    Wow, I am so glad you took the boys out for the day.:) You're right what a great way to make everyone aware of our children and all the love they can bring and all the things they can do.:)
    Have fun!
    Amy

  • Malones
    March 21, 2009 at 5:11 PM  

    I have enjoyed SO MUCH reading your blog every day. I read it with joy seeing God's hand in every day and KNOWING that He will bring all to completion. I can't wait to see the entire Malone Mob at church! I hope we don't overwhelm the boys. :)

    Ellen

  • Teri
    March 21, 2009 at 5:25 PM  

    I am glad to see that you took the boys to the store. I am guessing that Chris is feeling better. Can't wait to see all of you. The pictures are not showing. :-)

    Teri

  • Pamela
    March 22, 2009 at 11:14 AM  

    I'm so glad you got to enjoy DS Awareness Day out with the boys!! What a great opportunity! When we were in Mexico recently visiting Cara, we got to go to a children's museum with her. That does NOT happen here..... You don't take "those kids" out. People were very interested. Then we spent 1 full day and 2 evenings with the govt. officials involved in her adoption at their houses for dinner.and cookouts. She got to come too. They were all so amazed at "how normal" she was. I honestly think it's the first time most of them had ever been around someone with DS. It was wonderful for them to become aware of how precious she really is and how "able".

    I hope your day out on the town makes an impact in many lives over there and will help more children to have families!

    God bless you as you prepare to come home.

    Pamela
    adopting Cara from Mexico through RR

  • marji
    March 23, 2009 at 12:15 PM  

    Wow...I bet You can "even take them to a restaurant"! (that is for you, Mary) We can't wait to see all of you! Praying for Chris's quick healing. See you soon!