The National Advocate for People with Down Syndrome Since 1979

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He Did It!
He Did It!

March 2009 He did it. My adorable, three and one-half year old finally did it. He has been very close for awhile, but particularly close all week. This morning, however, he actually did it. You cannot imagine the overwhelming sense of pride I felt watching him achieve this seemingly (until today!) monumental task. As he had all week, he instructed me (via a low guttural groan and a dramatic point to the floor) to get him off the dressing table and to bring his pants. After following his orders, (as I often do) I just sat and watched (as I often do). This morning, I cannot explain why, it just felt different. With the determination of an Olympic athlete, he sat on the floor and began to put his right foot in the right pant leg. Always, his right foot in the right pant leg first. He never attempted it any other way. He pushed and maneuvered and wiggled and somehow willed his right leg all the way through. His foot! His foot actually appeared at the end of his pant leg! It was the most amazing and completely surprising sight we had ever seen. You have never seen anyone so happy to see a foot. For a brief moment, his proud smile simply ate his entire face. But his task was not complete. After a quick, conspiring and victorious glance in my direction, he was back to business. I understood, having been disappointed in the past, he did not want to celebrate too early. He turned to me and pointed to his left foot (all the while keeping his right foot held high in the air as a symbol of his victory). "Phooot," he said, actually, he said it more to his foot than to me. "Phooot in," he commanded. He peered over his glasses, which by now had slid down his little nose, further evidencing all of his hard work. His face was very serious. Then, as if in slow motion, he started to place his left foot in his left pant leg and he pushed and maneuvered and wiggled and somehow (some, including me, would say miraculously), the unthinkable happened. His left foot appeared at the end of his pant leg. Another foot in!! He could not believe it! I could not believe it! Before I could get up, grab him in my arms and squeeze the ever living life out of him. He was on his feet. His chubby little hands were grasped to the waist band of his pants. He stared at me and said "up!" I did not even realize there was more to this task than just putting your feet into your pants. He actually wanted to pull up his pants. He was really serious about this. He stood up and pulled. He pulled and pulled (not falling over once). What happened next was one of the most remarkable experiences I have ever witnessed maybe for both of us. But do you know, he did it. He actually did it. My adorable three and one-half year old little boy actually pulled his pants all the way up. We celebrated. We jumped and screamed and cheered. I called his five year old brother into the room. One of the many great things about five year old boys is their ability to get so excited over just about anything. Sensing the thrill in the room already, he joined in the festivities. All three of us were screaming. We ran victory laps around his room, laughing almost to exhaustion. It was a glorious moment. He actually did it. Then, as if it was just any other day, we went downstairs, had breakfast and drove to school. But I know, and in my heart I will always know, it was not just any other day. It was the day he actually put on his own pants! I could not be more proud.




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