sucky baby.

I’ve never been this excited about a bottle, nor its contents.

Last week I popped into Staples to pick up some supplies, and picked up this water bottle on a whim. I liked the colour, size and shape; I thought it would be a nice thing to have on hand for Aisha in the future. She likes to drink water, and will take it from a cup – although she refuses to take it from one of her regular bottles.

The little spout at the top flips up and down and has a straw attached. The function is pretty much straightforward; flip up top, put spout to mouth and sip. Voila! Thirst quenched. I think we take this action for granted. I have a friend whose son is either 12 or 13 and doesn’t know how to drink from a straw due to feeding/gastro issues he had as a small infant. Aisha couldn’t figure out how to breastfeed, so I hand expressed my milk and fed it to her from a bottle; kids with Down Syndrome can sometimes have suckling issues associated with low muscle tone. There are a ton of online message boards and parent forums chock full of tips and tricks on how to get little ones with DS to drink from bottles and straws.  Continue reading

what is she?

What is she? Cute as a button, that’s what!

When we’re oot ‘n’ aboot, my daughter’s appearance garners many inquisitive stares. Because of her fair complexion and silken hair, passersby sometimes try to discern without asking outright if there’s a  familial connection. Aisha has inherited my prominent forehead and mischievous expressions, so more often than not, they realize that she’s mine. And since it’s pretty obvious that she is of mixed race, people often really want to know which one(s).

It’s because of her eyes.

Continue reading

she’s a ten.

happy girl copyShe’s my star.

My little-big bean turned ten months about a week before Christmas and for some reason it was very emotional for me.

She is becoming very active now, rolling and army-crawling about to get to where and what she wants. I always knew she’d grow to be a stubborn little thing, and damned if the child hasn’t proved me right thus far. But she is also extremely loving and charming, ever-ready with a smile (any opportunity to show off her new teeth), and she makes me laugh-out-loud guffaw at least a couple times a day.

Parents of children with Down Syndrome are all too familiar with The List Of Things Your Child Won’t Ever Do, and for the most part, I’ve managed to ignore the naysayers and let the girl develop as she may, with a little help from her DT Patti and OT Amanda. Continue reading

to sleep, perchance to dream.

TWITM_sleeptrainingAisha is neither smiling nor smizing. This is a full-on, sleep-deprivation-induced meltdown.

Like her mama, Aisha is what Bajans would call, “a night bat” – or night owl, in North American terms. She has been a good, solid sleeper since she was born, but lately, her hours have been getting later and later. It used to be that she’d hit deep sleep mode around late evening; these days it’s closer to midnight, and sometimes beyond.

In some ways, I don’t mind, as it means that she doesn’t wake up before 9 or 10 (I’m so not a morning person); it also means that I can’t plan any evening activities like salsa, or going to see a movie, or even a late dinner with friends. My mother happily babysits, but I’d prefer that the babe is asleep so as not to pose too much of an imposition, so most (okay, ALL) nights, I end up just staying home.
Continue reading

unisex?

unisexLookit that face. Does this look like a little boy to you?

I suppose that because I am her mother, I can absolutely see that Peanut is a little girl. However, when I dress her in gender-neutral colours – green, yellow or grey in particular – people have a hard time ascertaining whether she’s male or female.

I don’t really ascribe to the pink for girls/blue for boys ideal; in fact, pink is not really a colour I like, and I have very little of it (one or two items, max) in my own wardrobe. Peanut happens to look good in it – and while I frequently dress her in whatever pink items she happens to own, I tend to buy clothing in other colours.

It’s hard, though, finding lovely little girls’ clothes that don’t look as though they lost a fight with a bottle of Pepto Bismol. And if the items aren’t pink, they’re ruffled, frilled and ruched to within an inch of their lives. What is the deal with tutus for little girls? And headbands with bows? And sequins? Why?

I put the wee one in a hoodie and jeans the other day, and my mother squawked that I was dressing the child like a thug. I thought she looked positively adorable! She’s usually in pants or a sleeper, anyway, so I wasn’t quite sure what the fuss was about. Continue reading

then and now.

il_fullxfull.165641151I simply cannot believe she is two weeks old today.

So it’s been just over two weeks since I last wrote, and obviously, quite a bit has happened since then – namely, I had a baby! Me. I gave birth. To a person. It’s amazing how much life can change in the span of fourteen days.

First, I would like to thank everyone for the well-wishes, prayers, thoughts, emails and messages during this time. Even though I was off busy birthin’ a baby, I can’t tell you how much I missed blogging, and how touched I was by the outpouring of support. You all are swell. Seriously.

I admit that I am having some difficulty writing this post. I’m scrolling through my phone looking for pictures to supplement, and I’m overcome with emotion. Aisha’s delivery and birth were difficult – traumatic, even. We almost didn’t make it. And while we’ve both come out of the experience no worse for wear, the enormity of it seeps into my conscience every now and then, and it’s sobering. Sometimes I tear up. Sometimes I cry outright.  Continue reading