I should be cleaning... getting ready for my FIL and his girlfriend who are coming over for dinner... but I'm taking a quick break to share someone special and dear to my heart.
This is Kinsey....
I met Kinsey and her Mom Stacy at the dance studio where my older girls (and now Sadie) dance. Kinsey is three months younger than Sadie and much wiser than most adults I know. This statement may sound strange about a five year old; but if you ever met her I know you would agree.
See, I have a bit of an issue when people treat Sadie like a mascot or a pet. Stacy and Kinsey have always treated Sadie as a friend. It could have something to do with Stacy, Kinsey's mom, teaching Kindergarten- but I tend to think we just happen to find us some real angels. They have always seen Sadie for her accomplishments and a abilities. Kinsey is truly happy to see Sadie and Stacy is always supportive and encouraging without that awkward "cheer on the underdog" vibe.
Lately I've been thinking about what great friends they are and something has been bugging me about the whole thing. See, I know that in Kinsey and Stacy's eyes Sadie is just a little girl who happens to have down syndrome. For that I am eternally grateful. But, something maybe some of you have never thought about is what friends of our kids have to sacrifice in order to stand beside them.
I'm not even sure how to put this in to words- so bear with me if this seems a little scattered. Besides being kind, supportive, and sensitive- Kinsey is a super bright, happy, outgoing, funny, gentle, and bug-loving little girl. She is cute and sweet and her mommies best friend... all qualities worthy of sainthood! Unfortunately, I've noticed that sometimes when she is with Sadie she is overlooked as the girls all run and hug the studio "mascot" Sadie! Yes, I am grateful the girls all love and love on Sadie; but sometimes my heart goes out to this sweet little girl who is looked over solely because she isn't sporting an extra chromosome. Stacy has voiced her excitement about Sadie and Kinsey performing in the same Christmas groups and after a few times I finally told her how I didn't want Kinsey to have to stay behind and "help" Sadie. That didn't seem to phase her one bit. Infact, Stacy told me that the friendship and lessons Kinsey will get from Sadie will be more important than moving forward with any group!
Regardless of what group they end up in or whether they continue in the same dance class or not-- it is apparent to me that both Sadie and I have found some true friends. Friends who love us for who we are. Friends who will stand beside us even if that means they may be looked over or passed up. Friends who understand that we are all children of God. Friends who understand the true meaning of FRIENDSHIP!
I hope that Sadie and I can be worthy of this friendship. I pray that we will be good friends in return. We love you little Ms. Kinsey! Stacy, thank you for raising a terrific daughter.