Foundation Of Passion

When Elias was born, Aaron and I struggled with the reality of having a child with special needs. We had no idea how to take care of someone with Down Syndrome, and we were scared. The first few days of Elias' life I saw a side of my husband that I had never known before. Soon after finding out the life changing news about Elias having Down Syndrome, Aaron had to make his first errand to pick up a few things at the store (probably diapers). As he was walking out of the store, groceries in hand, he glanced over and saw a few teenagers with Down Syndrome sitting on a bench outside the store. He became incredibly scared that Elias might not experience a fulfilling life. Or that he might not be able to bond with Elias like he had with Vitali. Or that people would make fun of Elias. As he wept in the car and pleaded with God to take away Elias' extra chromosome, he had no idea of what was given to him. He had no idea of the joy that would soon consume his life.

Today I watch Aaron, and he is proud. A lot has changed since those first few days of confusion. There was a day when Elias always wanted me, but not any more, he wants his daddy. I think I can count the times Elias has said, "mama" to me. All day long he is thinking of his "dada." I get him up from his nap and his first word is "dada." The other day I looked down the hall and saw Elias knocking on the garage door saying, "dada." He wants to be with his dad and I have a feeling he will want to be just like his dad as he grows up.

There are a lot of first thoughts and emotions Aaron and I had when we found out Elias had Down Syndrome. Some of them might sound a little harsh or unlike us, but those times were necessary for growth and bonding as we fell in love with our son. All the weeping was important for us to move forward. We needed to know what we had and why his life was so important to us, but that happened through a process. All those moments of heartache then were building a foundation of what has made us so passionate now.

When I captured this moment with Aaron and Elias, I couldn't help but think of how our thinking has changed since he was born. Life is so sweet with Elias, we had no idea.

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© 2014 Natalie Falls