What is Monica doing on World Down Syndrome Day? Since we haven’t posted in a while, here are some notes about a typical day with Monica. After making her bed, Monica donned the crazy socks to start the day – … Continue reading
It is truly delightful when Monica conveys that she grasps a concept, a way of understanding, which is not concrete, such as in daily routines. We have often experienced that Monica understands concepts better than she is able to express … Continue reading
Monica had another fun opportunity in May. She was invited to a Prom for young adults with disabilities. She invited her brother to be her escort. He was very good to her! As Monica’s older siblings have gone off to … Continue reading
A reader of this blog might wonder, what has Monica been doing the past many months?
When Monica’s family was visiting relatives in England in December, Monica and her mom had hoped to be a comfort or a help in her aunt’s valiant fight with cancer. Instead, Monica’s mom herself had to be hospitalized with serious medical issues. Monica and her younger brothers had to return to the States alone to get back to work or school, while their dad stayed with their mom. It was a serious adventure, rather than a fun, exciting one they might have loved to take. The three of them took a train, transferred trains, rode the underground (the Tube), then stayed alone in a hotel, then rode a plane to Toronto, found the car in the park-n-fly lot, and drove four hours to home. They cooperated as a team with no problems. They also had a great prayer team at home and in England storming the heavens for their safety and their Mom’s healing.
When arriving home, the three found Grandma and their older siblings had already mobilized to keep the family together while Mom and Dad were still managing medical challenges. Monica had to adapt to many changes. Dad brought Mom home to Ohio in a Life flight.
After a week in the hospital, she was moved to a rehab facility. Monica had to see her mother unconscious, then regaining consciousness, but unable to do many things. Monica wrote notes to her mom and prayed for her with the family. When her friends took her to dinner, she invited them to the rehab center to visit her mom too.
Mom came home faster than anyone could have hoped; thankful for the miracle of the perseverance of Monica’s dad to get the right medical attention, the miracle of all the connections among family and community providing such amazing prayerful support and the miracle of healing.
Monica found her mother mostly on the couch and it was Grandma doing the driving, shopping, laundry and organizing the house.
Monica had a little trouble adjusting. At the same time, Monica had work changes: a new work location, a new supervisor, a new van driver. Monica was not able to describe how these changes were stressful for her, so it came out in some disagreeability and difficulty cooperating – some just going to her room and closing the door.
As things settled down for her, Monica began showing more and more compassion to her mom.
When arriving home from work, Monica goes right to her Mom to see if she needs a drink, or Tylenol, or another blanket. Monica increased her determination to complete more household chores. Monica began calling her mother every day from work during her breaks and lunch to check on her. When Grandma had to leave, Monica immediately started making breakfast for her mom every morning.
So much to be thankful for!
Monica and her family attended a Pilgrimage of Mercy on Saturday, October 8, 2016. It was organized by the Cleveland Diocese and the Faith & Light group, which is part of L’Arche and open to people with disabilities and their … Continue reading
Monica has been working in the kitchen of a nursing home since February. Technically she is not employed by the nursing home because she is in a Community Work Experience program through an agency that provides job training for people … Continue reading
Monday morning chores.
No dust can settle on this girl!
Wake up. Get dressed in work uniform. Eat breakfast. Brush teeth. Put lunch in backpack.
Empty and load dishwasher.
Gather laundry from hampers in the bedrooms. Take to laundry room and start a load. Whites first.
Take the city-issued garbage and recycling bins to the curb.
Practice piano – 10 minutes.
While watching for your ride, practice Italian lessons with Duolingo on the iPad.
When van comes, head out the door. Greetings to work friends! Off to work.
And it’s only 7:45 a.m.!
Jean Vanier, founder of L’Arche, felt everyone, regardless of ability, should be given an opportunity for spiritual growth and expression. Out of that conviction came a retreat and small group experience called Faith and Sharing. In many cities in which … Continue reading
At any gathering, you will catch Monica taking the tabs off soda cans before putting them in the recycling bin. She is always on the lookout! Last week, we took her recent collection to Ronald McDonald House for their Pull … Continue reading
Some of Monica’s mom’s friends were planning a fashion show fundraiser. The daughters were going to be the models. Then one of the girls thought of Monica and wanted to include her. The girls had tea at Sally’s house and tried on vintage dresses. Then they all went to The Limited and tried on new clothes. The fashion show was about femininity and elegance and how they have been expressed in our clothing. Also how the clothing of other countries influenced clothes in the United States.
The girls arrived early on the day and practiced walking on the platform.
Then they all got dressed in a special room. There were lots of clothes and accessories. The girls helped each other.
The show started with some very beautiful and very old dresses.
Later there were the dresses from other countries. Monica’s first dress was a dirndl showing the influence of clothing from Austria. (Perfect for that Sound of Music fan!)
After the vintage dresses, everyone had lunch. Monica was seated with the other models, not her mom!
After lunch, the girls modeled the new clothes from the Limited.
Monica knew just how to stand to show off the dress she was wearing! It was a lot of fun!