Saturday, October 20, 2012

How old is your kid?

How many times do we see other children out in public and think they look to be about the same age as our own child and we ask the parent, how old is she/he?  Then you find out that they are indeed the same age as your kid and you think to yourself either,"man my kid is way more advanced than that kid."  Or you think,"wow, my kid isn't even close to doing the stuff that kid is doing."  It's hard sometimes being on the second end.  We all strive to be the best of the best and we want that for our kids too.  But the truth is, everyone's best, isn't the same. 

I think it's normal to compare your own kids to each other at certain ages, and to compare your kids to their peers.  With Jayden I never really knew where she stood compared to other kids her own age.  We were never really around a lot of other children so I didn't really know for sure what other kids her age were doing.  Together we worked on typical toddler stuff, ABC's, counting, shapes, colors.....and she picked up on things very quickly, so we just kept going.  She was a very verbal child, and once she said her first word, she was off from that point on.  I never really thought Jayden was some exceptional kid when it came to learning, but things definitely just come to her and she just gets "it."  With Sophia, we don't really hang out with a lot of other children her age either, but I remember what Jayden was doing at Sophia's age, and sometimes I find myself thinking about just how far behind Sophia is than her sister was at that age.  Typically I don't let Sophia's delay's get to me.  She is who she is and eventually she'll get "it" too.  It's just going to take some more time and patience.  I have all the same expectations for Sophia that I have for Jayden, but I also allow Sophia more time to achieve those expectations.  I also try to remember that areas that Sophia shows delays in, she makes up for by excelling in other areas.  No she may not know her ABC's and 123's, but this girl has some social skills that could take down any other 3 year old I've ever known!  I also know that a lot of Sophia's talents are hidden behind a voice that just can't fully express itself  yet.  I can tell that the wheels are turning in that little head of hers, but getting those thoughts out is what is hard right now.  But together we will continue to work on the same things I worked on with Jayden and when she gets it, we'll continue moving on.   

Is it wrong to compare our own kids to each other, or to compare them to their peers?  I don't know? but I think it's something that every one does, at least occasionally.  I don't just compare them in academics, but as a 3 or 6 year old in general.  And I do find myself thinking sometimes that if that 6 year old can do it, why can't Jayden?  Or I beat myself up when I hear of other children with Down syndrome, Sophia's age or younger, doing so much more than her and feeling as if I am failing her by not pushing her harder.  I just need to remember that my kids are who they are, and that is good enough for me.         

Sophia, Jayden and their cousins :)


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