Friday, March 29, 2013

Some smiles for my Friday

There are some things that just make me smile, even if I try not to.

Samaira has a yoga session every week. I take her to this 1:1 yoga session where she practices with her teacher while I sit on the side mat and observe both of them. It is typically an hour long session and I, for no reason at all, am smiling for about 80% of that session. Really, for absolutely no reason. Something about this hour just makes me smile. It is kind of funny how Samaira’s yoga session centers me and brings me into a zen mode.

When I go to Samaira’s day care to pick her up at the end of the day, she gives me the BIGGEST smile ever and waves vigorously at me. That makes me smile.

The thing that has changed over the last few weeks, however, is that Samaira’s toothless smiles have been replaced by her central & now lateral incisor filled smiles. My sister told me only recently, that when her babies had toothless smiles, she used to often wonder what their teeth-filled smiles would be like. Honestly, the thought of Samaira’s smile changing never occurred to me until my sister said this to me. It finally became a reality now that she actually has a couple of teeth coming out! And boy is it different. She has a different smile now!

I really miss her toothless smiles. And that made me nostalgic about the last 15.5 months with Samaira. What else have I taken for granted that will change over time, and that I will miss later on? I wish I could capture it all and preserve it for later. Maybe I should take more photos & videos. We are not a camera handy family. As in, we don’t always have camera ready to capture the everyday precious moments of life. Maybe I should make an effort to be more camera-ready and capture it all! While I am having this monologue, I am internally resolving to capture more of Samaira’s childhood. I think, for me though, a first step would be to experience Samaira’s childhood in a little bit of a more be-in-the-moment state (can’t think of a better word). I feel like in the hustle-bustle of life and work, I sometimes forget to just experience things as they are. 

Ok, so here is a resolution. How about I just try to be more present when I am with Samaira and try to experience all that she is? Once I do that, I will graduate to capturing it all as well. I feel pretty good about my new resolution! Obviously, it is easier said than done! 

But at least it is a happy thought for a Friday, and that makes me smile J.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Peace and Love on this special day

Today, March 21st, is a celebration day. March 21st = 3/21 = 3 copies of the 21st Chromosome. It is the World Down Syndrome Day and we wouldn't have known about it if it weren't for Samaira. Today is the day we celebrate the value, acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome. So I woke up this morning and clapped, with Samaira.

Some facts about Down syndrome - it occurs in one in every 691 live births. Individuals with Down syndrome have 47 chromosomes instead of the usual 46. It is the most frequently occurring chromosomal disorder. Down syndrome is not related to race, nationality, religion or socioeconomic status. The most important fact to know about individuals with Down syndrome is that they are more like others than they are different.

Some facts about Samaira – she is now 15 months old and she totally rocks our world, sometime literally. At first I thought she is this super innocent looking child who can do no wrong. Now she has started giving me this attitude and I feel like I am getting to know a new her. Sometimes I wonder if this is what 15 month age group is like, then what happens during teenage years! She tends to be really moody sometimes. She likes eggs one day and not the next day. And now we have a dozen eggs sitting at home with only Siddharth left to finish them as I don’t eat eggs! She has become very stubborn about her choices off late. In a lot of ways, she reminds me of me. Eeek. That’s scary. But she has still maintained her mischievous grin that could melt my heart, no matter what she has done. The one thing that she teaches me every day is to clap. Every time she thinks she has done something cool – she claps. Every time she thinks someone else has done something cool – she claps. If she sees someone else clapping she has the look of “clap it like you mean it”. So now I clap. I clap to celebrate every little thing, especially with Samaira. She has taught me to use the pause button in life, to enjoy and celebrate every little victory and every little achievement.

So here’s to celebrating today. Here’s to peace and love on this special day. Just because. 

If you are ever curious or have any questions – do let me know! Changing outdated perceptions starts with open conversations with those around us.  

Monday, March 11, 2013

My little girls

A month is a long time to be away from home. We spent this last month vacationing. We spent the first half of the vacation with my in-laws and the second half in India with my folks.

Time flies when you are having fun and loving life and that’s exactly what happened in India! It was a combination of ALL my favorite people – Maa, Daddy, Bro, Sis & fly., and of course the Husband and the Daughter. It was so much goodness packed in so little time that I am left craving for more. I am now missing all the laughter, jokes, arguments, discussions, crying, yelling, dancing, singing, eating, sleeping, gossiping, shopping, you name it!

My nieces, P & A, are the most amazing little girls I have ever witnessed. This was the first time they were meeting Sam. I absolutely loved how they interacted with Samaira. P being the oldest one wanted to play the big sister and assumed the role so beautifully. She kept telling everyone “since I am the big sister, I have to take care of Samaira. She is my responsibility.” P & A kept singing for Samaira till they were totally rhymed out. A being the younger one knew she wasn’t big enough to hold Samaira, but was definitely interested in singing to her and playing with her. Some of these moments are captured in my memory ever since and make me smile every so often, especially when I am by myself. I was even more fascinated to see Samaira respond very positively to my nieces. Samaira smiled every time she looked at them and wondered at them with curiosity.

Now that we are back, I am dreaming about the next time all my girls will get together!