We had assignment on SUCCESS STORIES OF CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL NEEDS. I came across this journal and made my reflection.
They say God only gives special kids to special people, and I really didn't think I was that special to get two of them! But my boys compliment each other well! Matthew keeps Justin physically active and mentally stimulated, and Justin aides Matthew's social abilities and really brings out his personality. They greet each other after school with big hugs - they are brothers AND best friends!!
My oldest son, Justin, is 5 ½ years old and has Down syndrome. He is in a Life Skills class this year, but after Christmas break he started integrating into regular kindergarten class for social times (centers, library, music, recess, etc.). This has helped both his speech and socialization. We just had his end of year ARD and I am very proud of several points. 1) He is scoring, on average, approximately a 4-year-old level academically. 2) He will remain in Life Skills as core class, but has been moved up to FIRST GRADE for inclusion opportunities. 3) Testing done indicated Justin scored 109 in SOCIAL SKILLS (normal range is 90 to 100). He is my social butterfly and everyone instantly falls in love with him. It is nice when I pick him up from school and several other kids from different classes run up to tell Justin "BYE." Everywhere we go, I see kids tapping there mom saying, "Momma, Momma - that's Justin!" He makes me very proud!
Outside of school, we are involved in Special Olympics. He has recently taken pictures on a police motorcycle to be used for fund-raising and at a law enforcement recruitment for personnel to participate in the annual "Torch Run." The Torch Run is law enforcement’s effort to support Special Olympics both personally and financially.
Justin and Matthew have learned to swim without any "floatie" assistance! They are even diving in the shallow end of the pool picking up objects off the bottom, and swimming greater distances underwater. They go swimming at least 2 or 3 times a day!
We have recently learned that Matthew has a high-functioning form of autism. Although doctors tried to initially account for Matthew's speech delay by having an older sibling with delays, we now know that is not true (and I never believed it anyway!) I do believe, however, that Justin's vibrant personality has helped Matthew have the social skills he does maintain. If it were not for Justin, I believe Matthew would be even more "closed." Academically, Matthew is very advanced. He just turned 4 and can already write and spell at least 10 words, can count to 30, and memorizes everything. I am VERY proud of the accomplishments of BOTH my boys!! - R.M., Port Neches, TX
I would like to say that I was amazed reading the story. Thou the parents of Justin and Mathew was not that happy of having two special children but they never doubted that their children are amazing, and can do even more compared to normal children. It has captured my heart on the dedication of the parents and the acceptance of the classmates. Living in the society of not so much good when it comes to treating these children, would make me realize that somehow the acceptance and the respect and specially the love of parents coupled with the dedication of the teachers, can make a difference in making these children into an industrious people. As they say It’s never too late.
Never too late to care, never too late help, never too late to accept, never too late to love and never too late to late to teach. There are still a lot of them, they just need to be seen. As you see them look into their eyes you will see human real normal boy/girl inside them that just can't get out in the typical ways.