Monday, August 31, 2009

33. Normal?

Recently, Oz Squad agent November posed a challenge to all members of Oz Squad. Write an essay that concentrates on a specific aspect of Down syndrome - an aspect that we advocates frequently find ourselves defending. I chose to focus on the idea of what it means to be normal, and what each person's life is really worth. I dug back to my high school grocery store days for inspiration, and ended up with another poem.

This entry, and others like it, are in the process of being collected for review. They will be posted on the Oz Squad blog in the near future. Please make sure you stop by and have a look.

Aisle 12

Click clack, click clack
A dollar ninety nine.
I'm stocking the shelves at the People-Mart
Pricing each one
With a plastic gun.
Judging them one at a time.

Click clack, click clack
A sea of human cans.
My task is to calculate each one's worth
By color by weight
By size and by shape
A price for each life in my hands.

Click clack, click clack
How can I determine the cost?
Shall I tally the value trait by trait?
Big heart or big brain
Are they worth the same?
I confess that I feel a bit lost.

Click clack, click clack
Am I willing, am I able?
To subtract for the scratches, scuffs and dings?
Dented or defaced
Will that change the taste?
What if a can's missing its label?

Click clack, click clack
Rows and rows of unmarked cans.
No way to account for potential or grace
No price is too high
I let out a sigh
Just what is the worth of a man?

Click clack, click clack
Pointless pursuit of prices.
Give up the charade, my futile trade
Close down the store
And lock the front door
For each man on the shelf is priceless.

Monday, August 3, 2009

32. Throw me the idol, I'll throw you the whip!

My blog is the recipient of the Golden Advocate Award, sent to me by Lisa at Finnian's Journey. Why is this special for me? Because Lisa's blog was the very first Down syndrome blog that spoke directly to me all those months ago as I slowly ventured out into the DS community. Finnian was born one week before Ozzie. As I first read Lisa's blog, I was able to see a life running parallel to my own, and it gave me hope and strength. So thanks once for the award, Lisa, but thanks a million times for sharing your story.

I am friends with an amazing group of bloggers, and I have no doubt all of them will eventually receive this award. But I would like to pass it along to someone who has used her blog to reach out - way out - to people who need it. Down Syndrome New Mama doesn't just write about how Down syndrome has touched her life (although that would be more than enough). She reviews books and products! She showcases brand spankin' new blogs created by brand spankin' new DS parents, and asks everyone to visit and say hello! She holds contests and giveaways! She writes brilliant essays about important and touching and personal things!

Is there anything she can't do? Well... probably, but let's not dwell on the negatives.

I'm not going to post all of the specifics about accepting this blog/passing it along. You can read all of the fine print at Rejenerations. I'm off to the afterparty.