I don't think anything I post tonight is gonna matter after y'all read Joshua's words, which I am sharing in this post.
BUT, this is what I posted tonight on my Facebook:
I don't think I can adequately express my appreciation to the awesome teachers we've had on this journey. After a rocky start at one school, we moved to another school in town. We walked into that first meeting feeling beaten-down and discouraged...but God had gone before us, and He had prepared the way. We met Mrs. Diane Thomas, and she literally changed all of our lives...for the better...right then and there.
One person, y'all...ONE PERSON.
Never doubt the impact you can have on the lives of others.
Mrs. Thomas was passionate, knowledgeable, creative and empathetic. I cannot tell you how good it felt to have support...at school. Since Joshua's first year of Kindergarten was kind of a hot mess for all involved, we all decided to run him thru Kindergarten again the next year...just so he'd really have the hang of it. I will never forget the day when Mrs. Thomas told me, "I've got the PERFECT teacher for Joshua next year. And she can't wait to have him in her class!" Enter Ms. Rupard. Joshua liked her immediately. She was firm...but she was also fun and gentle and sweet.
As the days went on that year, I slowly began to relax a little. Even when there were issues, Ms. Rupard treated me with respect and understanding, and we worked together to find a solution. ONE PERSON, y'all. ONE teacher...enriched the life of ONE child, and gave hope to ONE discouraged mom. TEACHERS ROCK!
Annnnd...just when I was feeling all warm and fuzzy, remembering some of the good people God placed in our lives during Joshua's first years of school...I got a text from a friend who said, "Joshua's post...amazing."
And, not gonna lie. I thought, "UH OH." Because we never know WHAT he is going to say.
Here are my Joshua's words:
When sometimes I think back on my younger days. I understand how many times. I was probably put down all, for the way I was. From being born with downs. Is something I wanted to have. I accept that. I have downs and I understand that. The Lord has made us according to his purpose. I think back. On my childhood. And I didn't understand why The Lord made me have downs. Because of that. That is why. I cover it up. By teaching myself material arts. Shaolin because it build's how I am. As a person. It has taught me to overcome through kind of insecurities that I have. I like doing martial arts. Because it takes it all I got to give it my best. It help's to clear my head. So I can rise above my insecurities and inadequacies that. I have. With the martial arts. That I do. Makes me a stronger person. And I can focus much better on the spiritual aspects that is main, thing. Because it has developed me into what The Lord want's me to be. I know I can face what challenge that may come my way. As long I make short goals and stick with them. Can make a much better way of life. That I understand that. I must put a way childish things. And focus on being a man. I will not run away. From the things. That has made me the way. I am. To all glory to The Lord. And not me. Because I am second and a alpha male. I will do whatever The Lord want's me to do.
And now we are all cryin' up in herrrrr...
It made me so sad to read his words. We have worked really hard to try and make thing "okay" with Joshua. We haven't focused on him having Down Syndrome. We've celebrated his accomplishments, just like with our other kids. We have tried to show all of them that we are ALL different...and that it's "okay."
We thought we were making it "okay" with Joshua that he has Down Syndrome, and "okay" that he is different and "okay" that he can't do certain things. But then, when he writes stuff like that, I feel like a complete failure...because he is apparently more aware of everything than we all thought.
AND IT IS BREAKING MY HEART.
I know that, as people, we all feel hurt and disappointment and sadness and rejection. I never wanted any of my kids to feel these things, but they have. That's part of life...I know this.
I just never wanted JOSHUA to feel any of these things...but he has. As a mom, I've always wanted to protect my children's hearts...and I know I can't always, and I know I SHOULDN'T always and I haven't always. I have, I think, taught them coping skills...the main one being RUN TO JESUS FIRST, because His ways are always the best ways.
But, I especially wanted to protect the heart of one who is so innocent and pure.
I'm dying a little on the inside.
"The is near the brokenhearted; he delivers those who are discouraged." Psalm 34:18