Thursday, March 29, 2012

Day 4, Part II: Adventures With Beth (and a much more successful blogger meet-up!)

Samantha and I departed Seattle and headed slightly north-ish to join Cindy, Beth, Chuck and Diana for lunch at a diner in their town.  I was so excited to meet them, and hoped Samantha could continue to live her donut-fueled congeniality until the eventual ride back to Diane and Per's house (and preferably beyond...). 

Not too long after Samantha was born, and I discovered blogs as a source of information and support, I craved a look into the future, constantly searching for the ones about the older children and adults with Down syndrome.  I needed that, but it was very, very difficult to find.  I mean, my baby was only little and most of the blogs were certainly about people who were older than Samantha, but I needed to see the glimpse beyond that, beyond the 2 and 3 year olds. 

Those blogs are still few and far between (I may have to do a post one day soon with a list of such blogs that I've come across so far, for those of you who are interested), but about 2 years ago (has it been that long?) I discovered Adventures With Beth, and have loved following along ever since.  Beth's mother, Cindy, chronicles their everyday life, the joys and frustrations, the fun and beautiful things their family does together, and how ordinary their lives are.  I had needed to know that the center of my universe would no longer be Down syndrome, and that I would soon experience that ordinariness myself. 

And when I realized that we would be spending time in their neck of the woods, Cindy was the first person I told, thrilled at the prospect that we might get to meet IRL (again, that's in real life for those of you not in-the-know...).  And we totally made it happen. 

I know I have been using the term warm to describe the people we'd been meeting on our trip, but seriously, without consulting a thesaurus, that's totally, exactly what adjective describes this family, without a doubt.  Warm, friendly, so, so easy to talk to, genuine.  Beth was very quiet, matched only by Samantha, who retreated into her little shell until a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and potato chips were presented to her by the waitress.  Chuck, Cindy and I shared stories of Ancestry.com adventures, Diana spoke about her recent trip to England, Sammi stuck her nose into her PB&J, Beth enjoyed her omlette, and I practically inhaled the delicious potato pancake with apple sauce that I'd ordered, something I had never before seen on a menu (if anyone can recommend somewhere locally I can find these, please let me know!  I'll be a friend for life!).  Beth brought Samantha a Dr. Seuss book which Sammi initially refused, but which became her favorite for the rest of our trip, reading it over and over and over again, in the car, on the airplane, at bedtime...you name it.

I'm sad that our visit was so brief, but hopefully next time we're out that way, we'll be able to get together for a longer period of time.

Oh, how I loooooove this photo...



Loooooove this one, too, and looooooove this family!!

7 comments:

Jenny said...

Great picture of Sammi and Beth!

I have to say I am so thankful for the Mothers of teenagers and adults with Ds who take the time to blog about it. So many of us starting out on this journey really need that glimpse into the future...There is so much we can learn from some one who has walked the path before us. So I too am thankful for Cindy's blog.

Leah said...

I just saw Beth's blog for the first time a few days ago. Yo Mamma Mamma compiled a list of blogs featuring young adults with Ds, which was so great. I got to see Ms. Sammi's pic up on Beth's blog. So cool! It sounds like you guys had a really nice, if rather whirlwind trip up here. We were actually at Pike Place Market a couple of weeks ago. Wouldn't that have been funny to run into you guys there.

Team Lando said...

I need to check out that blog, but in the meantime, try Original Pancake House for your potato omelet/applesauce/sour cream amazingness locally...

Anna said...

oh what an incredible treat. I am hoping this weekend while I am working for VSA at Special olympics I will be able to soak in all the comfort meeting/ seeing these families. I am caught in a odd place- melancholy at seeing where she is then thrilled to know in my head and heart where we were only 18 months ago. Id have loved to have been a fly on the wall. Beautiful photos as always.

Rochelle said...

Hadn't read their blog. So excited to check them out. Glad you were able to meet up if only for a little while.

Cindy said...

Oh my gosh, this was beautiful. You have such a way with words, I'm truly humbled.

I've thought about you and Sammi every day since you left. I'm glad you had such a good time in the Great Northwest.

Anonymous said...

How fabulous to finally meet in person. Just shows how powerful these blogs can be. Happy Spring Break, I already miss Sammi!!!!