Little things like extra chromosomes

I received a lovely email from across the world last week. It was from my cousin (who grew up in New Zealand and now lives in Australia). I love the simple story she shares — and most importantly, the reminder to always see people first.

Hi beautiful family,

I meant to email you last week, but as usual, I let time get away on me.

Anyway, I was in the supermarket — and as I was at the checkout, the man behind me muttered something under his breath.

I turned around and said, “Sorry!”

He said, “Oh, I was just saying that this is gonna’ cost me heaps.”

I said, “Oh, that’s no good.”

He smiled and said, “I’m cooking two special meals for one special lady.”

I smiled and said, “Ohhh, then it will be worth it then!”

He laughed and said, “Yes, it is. I’m making tacos.”

I said that sounded delicious and wished him the best, as his girlfriend walked back over to him with a smile on her face, giving him a kiss.

He said, “Have a great day!” And I headed home with a smile.

I was feeling really good because 1. It was really cute to see a boyfriend adore his lady and 2. They both had Down syndrome, which at the end of the day is irrelevant. But it made me so happy to see two people in love — and that anyone can have love no matter their shape, size, color, extra chromosome, age, etc.

To be honest, if Kate wasn’t in my life — and I hadn’t learned so much about Down syndrome — I would have maybe not spoken to this man so casually. I probably would have been a bit nervous and thought, ‘What if he doesn’t understand me’?

I think fear of the unknown limits us, but I feel like you guys have really helped me to realize: we are all one in the same. And that little things like extra chromosomes are nothing to fear, but to be celebrated.

I loved Shea’s email — especially her last line: “Little things like extra chromosomes are nothing to fear, but to be celebrated.”


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