Tuesday, March 17, 2015

"Daddy, What's Down Syndrome?"

I have a new essay up on Yahoo! Parenting. It's first piece for them and I'm glad to have a space that's interested in my more personal essays (especially with their giant readership). It's about talking to my daughter about her brother's diagnosis.
"My daughter is five and she likes to ask questions. Some are awesome: “Why can’t you see black holes?” “Why is sugar sweet?” “Can I be the first girl president?” “If I do this, will it explode?” (Answers: physics of light; chemistry of food; yes you can; and “Stop shaking that bottle right now!”).

Other questions are more complicated: “How do babies get inside mommies’ tummies?” and “Will you and mommy die?” We try to answer all questions honestly, but also appropriately for her age.

A few weeks ago, though, Ellie asked me the one question I’ve been preparing for since before she was born, but was still not ready to answer: “Daddy, what is Down syndrome?”
I told her. Read on! :)

My kids. Nice hats.