Friday, January 18, 2013

A Friend's Birthday Party

Today's gift is a friend's birthday party.

It used to be when I said "the kids have birthday parties to attend this weekend", "the kids" meant my two youngest.  However, now you do not know what "kids" I'm talking about.  Tonight, my oldest and youngest had birthday parties at the same time.

Every time my daughter with Rett Syndrome gets invited to a peers birthday party a piece of my heart melts.  Every child deserves to have a friend.   Every child deserves to be invited to a birthday party. However, having a child with special needs makes something so easy... like an invitation to a birthday party seem difficult.  I think the number one factor of why it doesn't happen often is fear....from both the birthday child and the parents of the birthday child.  I think they worry so much about how the child with special needs is going to "fit in" that they forget behind every child with special needs is also a caring family.  A family who isn't going to throw their child into something which is going to be uncomfortable for them or their friends.  Because of this fear, invitations are often sparse.

This is how it used to be.

This is why I my heart melts when my daughter with Rett Syndrome gets invited to a friend's party.  It means they want my daughter there.  It means they believe in my daughter.  It means my daughter has friends!

I love seeing how her friends incorporate her into their party.  I love how they invite her for a "slumber party", wanting her there for the whole party just like their other friends.  But they know there is a chance the "overnight" part could not happen....but they still invite her...because its okay.  They understand and would rather have her there than not there.  I love her friends.  They mean just as much to me as they do to her.

Tonight my daughter had a "slumber" party to go to.  She had a blast being "one of the girls"!  I loved seeing pictures of the night from the birthday girl's mom.  I loved seeing my daughter blend in with her friends.  I loved having a "typical" mom moment.

We are very blessed my daughter has her incredible teacher and friend to attend birthday parties with her to help make the experience wonderful and "typical".  I could attend with her...and would if her teacher/friend could not; however I think it is better if her "mom" didn't chaperone her to the party. After all girls have to be girls without their moms around!  And lucky for us her friends think of her teacher/friend as a friend to them too!

I can't thank my daughter's friend enough for believing in her.  Having a friend like her means the world to my daughter and our family.  Taking a picture to capture the memory only lasts seconds, but the memories from the picture will last a lifetime.

What do you think of this picture...can you find my daughter?

Here is a quote for today...

Some people are special cause of what they say, or what they do. But you are special to me because of the things you've done for me and who you are in my life. Cause just by being there you've made all the difference- Author Unknown

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