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January 30th, 2007
I’ve gotten quite used to this Down Syndrome thing, but sometimes the simplest things catch me off guard. Addison doesn’t walk yet, though all the kids his age do. In fact, they run, climb rocks, and stairs. I’ve gotten used to the little mile markers. Life happens slowly around our house, and we’ve grown to like it. When Addison sat up, I thought: Well, it will only be a few weeks, and he won’t need pillows around him anymore. That was 9 months ago. I’ve gotten used to hauling him around, though my muscles beg to differ. At 4 a.m. a few nights ago, I reached over to put Addison back in his crib after he woke up in the wee hours of the morning. When I tried to pull my arm away from his back, a nerve or a muscle snapped or pinched. It went deep. I couldn’t move.
One of the great things about living in Costa Rica is that I can have a person come to my home for massages and haircuts – even the vet comes to our house. (And, for my crazy dogs, staying out of the car is one big bonus.) I set up an appointment with the masseuse; she’d be coming the next day, but I still faced the day ahead. What to do? Run some errands!
After picking up my new pair of glasses, Addison and I stopped for lunch. The waiter asked me if I wanted a high chair. It was the first time I could say yes. This was a new milestone.
“Si,” I said. I hauled Addison out of the stroller and held him while we waited for the high chair. When the waiter appeared with the chair, my heart sank. The high chair was not the kind that would support my son. It was wooden – the kind sold on the roadside – and he could easily slip through the sides. My heart sank. But Addison was much too happy to go back in the stroller. I decided to give the high chair a try.
I had to sit Addison so close to the table, he could reach everything on it. I gave him the menu. He paged through it over and over again, talking and pointing as he looked. I held him with one hand while I ate with the other. Near the restaurant was a playground jammed packed with kids jumping off dinosaurs and running under the plastic tree. Many of the kids were Addison’s age.
I’ve always been different; I never really made it on the “inside.” Kids made fun of my hair in school; my mom put hot dogs in a thermos for my lunch; I wore clothes from the Goodwill; and I played the trumpet.
Addison grabbed a napkin. I asked him to give it to me. He spit it out and put it in my hand. It’s taken me a long time to get comfortable out here on the edge. It’s nice to have such good company.Filed under Costa Rica, Down Syndrome Costa Rica, Expatriate Life, Humor, Kids in Costa Rica, Life in Costa Rica, Living in Costa Rica, Susan Lutz (Carmichael) | Comments (4)