Russell and I just got back from a trip last night. We had spent the early part of this week down on Vancouver Island with my Mom. We had some family business to take care of so it wasn't exactly a pleasure trip...But we got many things resolved, and I have to say that what I thought was the worst thing to start my new year out with, happened to be the best...Because now I can go through this year feeling at peace with some of the things we were dealing with.
I was very nervous on the drive down as I do NOT do well driving in snow!! This is what the Mountain pass we had to drive through looked like in some areas...
For most people this is probably not bad road conditions at all, but I'm sissy...For me I can't breath or relax until we are through it! Other than this part of the road, the drive down was good.
One of the neatest parts of the trip was waiting for the ferry...It was just back in September that we were down last and we were carrying Russell around, and I would tear up every time I saw a little kid younger than Russell toddle past us...THIS time around Russell was walking...EVERY where and it made my heart feel sooo good!
He even tried to go into a little park where he saw other kids playing...This park had wood chips on the ground and Russell could not walk on them...The surface was to bumpy and uneven. So that is something we will be working on in the next little while...Perfecting his walking skills on different surfaces.
So Russell was a HUGE brat this trip! We are definitely dealing with the terrible two's now and it is NOT fun!
Russell has been throwing the biggest fits when he gets upset....Arching his back, flopping himself to the ground, head butting, smacking, and the occasional biting.
So the disciplining is starting...NOW!
At Grandmas house we found a little wicker chair that Russell has a hard time getting out of...We brought it home with us and it is now called the naughty chair!
Russell may end up spending a lot of time in this chair as we are now introducing time outs!
When ever I am at my Grandmas I look through her old photo albums, and I came across a picture of me at Russell's age where I think we look quite similar...
I also happened to come across pictures of my Grandma's sisters boy Paul, who also happened to have Down syndrome. I loved looking at these pictures because I just think Paul is the most handsome young man.
These pictures were taken back in 1982 and Paul was 16 then...So I guess that would mean he was born around 1967?? Does that sound right? Math...Not my strong point!
Anyway, My Grandma's sister lived in New Zealand...She had two children, a daughter and then many years later had Paul. She refused to put him in an Institution and raised him at home with his family. And obviously that made all the difference in his life. He grew up and had a job.
He lives in a group home now as both his parents have passed away...But he has lived a fulfilling happy life.
This is my favorite picture. Just look at how his Mother looks at him.
(She is the woman at the end)
She is proud of her son and you can see that and feel that in this picture.
You could also feel it in the short notes she wrote my Grandma on the backs of the pictures...
The last picture I came across was of Paul and his Mother when he was 29 years old...Still a very handsome young man.
These pictures speak volumes to me...It tells of how a Mothers unconditional love can make all the difference in their childs life. Here was a woman who went against what Society told her to do with her son...A woman who saw her childs worth and not one person was going to tell her he couldn't or wouldn't, do something.
This woman helped change the world a tiny bit for my son.
And I never met her...But I love her.
So that was where we have been the past few days. The trip home was not very good. Russell enjoyed the ferry ride though...
When he saw the other ferry passing by us he got all excited!
But it was raining out so we couldn't stay out long on the outside decks...
It rained the ENTIRE way home! I am not usually scared at all driving in the rain but this weather was insane...It was difficult to see the road and water was pooling on it...So the drive was very slow and nerve wracking. On the mountain pass the rain turned to snow and the roads were slushy and hard to drive on.
It was not fun!
But we are home safe and sound now and it feels good! Russell was super excited to see all the kids...He made his rounds hugging and kissing each one of them.
I am glad the trip is over with and I feel so at peace that this is going to be a fantastic uneventful year for our family.