Sunday, March 14, 2010

Down Syndrome Meet - Part I

The Down Syndrome Federation of India had completed 25 years and they celebrated the milestone with a grand celebration last Sunday. When we went to attend the event, we thought it was going to be a parent's meet sort of a thing. I was so excited because I never got an opportunity to attend any such meetings before. I love to connect to other parent s of kids with DS . Its like meeting someone who speaks the same language as you do. Someone who can really understand you. Someone to whom you don't have to explain things. Someone with whom I don't have to be on guard all the time to make sure they don't say things that might hurt my son's self esteem.

OK, getting back to the meeting, we were little prepared for what was in store. We were pleasantly surprised. Even as we entered the huge hall, the entire room was dark. And, on the brightly lit stage on the other end, were two young adults with down syndrome with their keyboards and one of them was playing a music. I still do not know why, but I broke down immediately. I was happy and yet I couldn't control my tears. I'm still trying to figure out the reason behind those tears.

The two young adults were wonderful with their keyboard. And, it was followed by a lot of other events. The kids and adults from different special schools from all over the state had come to perform and it was so wonderful to see their enthusiasm. They all just rocked.

Indian classical dance is called 'baratha naatiyam'. In this form of dance, expressions on the face are as important as the movements. And, they were a few girls who had such excellent expressions and they were able to coordinate their movement and expressions at the same time. And, I was so happy to see a particular guy dance for a song. He was actually using his flexibility to perform complicated dancing steps which non-ds community would find difficult to do. And, he did not forget even a single step in the entire song.

And, they wanted all the kids on the stage. Even as I was walking towards the stage with other moms and their young kids, again my eyes began to flood. I was worried if I would end up crying on the stage. Thankfully, I got busy with waking Vignesh up and getting him to feel comfortable to the bright light. It was so beautiful to see all those kids there. And, they played a song from a movie. Some kids stood up and danced. And, even some of the the younger ones began to rock on their bum. Its was so cute. Vignesh just woke up and he was just trying to figure out what was going on.

It was their day! Some of them were perfect in their performance, some tried to be at their best and some needed help to perform. Each one was unique just like their non-ds peers. But, there were a few things that was common among the kids and adults I saw on the stage. Not a single person feared being on stage or performing before a huge crowd. And, instead of trying to please others, they just forgot the world around them and truly enjoyed what they did. I guess that is a lesson that the world needs to learn from them.

I was so happy to be there. I'm so thankful that the Down Syndrome Federation of India decided to celebrate their 25 years the way they did! It just made me realize how happy I felt being a part of the down syndrome community. Our kids rock and I'm so proud of my son's extra chromosome!

P.S: I hate myself for forgetting to take the camera. Anyway, will get in touch with the down syndrome center and try to get some of the photos and post it here.


  1. Beautiful! What a celebration! I have tears in my eyes just reading about it.

  2. Sumithra it sounds as though you had beautiful fun!
    Can't wait to see images!

    thanks for your heartfelt words on my post, and also Sumithra you have held me up also, with your words and your heart.

    Love you all!
    All the love in the universe from me to you dear friend.

  3. Hi Sumithra,

    Wish even we could attend it.

    I read your comment on Hannah's blog, have you started with TNI. I am planning to order it from UK (as they dont sell it in India).
    Was wondering the one you have got is the Original one and how much does it cost?

  4. how simply wonderful -
    Thrilled you got to share this expereince

  5. I'm crying just reading about it. Would have definitely lost it if I was there! How could you not. What a joyful yet emotional day that must have been! Sounds so perfectly beautiful.

  6. Oh, I'm crying, too, just reading about it. Oh, Sumi, WONDERFUL!!! ♥♥♥