It continues to blow me away how many life experiences Lilly has. We spent the weekend in New York City and New Jersey visiting family. Being back in Manhattan again was like coming home to Lilly - which is so funny to me. She's totally at home, hailing taxi's, seeing Broadway shows like it's no big deal, eating sweets at Dylan's Candy Bar at 10 o clock at night. The usual, for this little girl.
And then seeing her interact with her newborn baby cousin in New Jersey - loving him and feeding him and holding him and singing to him and telling him stories: "Hi baby. My mommy is beautiful and my daddy is a doctor. The end."
And going through two 5 hour car trips in a 48 hour weekend like it's no big deal; we didn't even bring snacks or drinks for her in the car. She played her iPad, listened to music, napped a bit, just a laid back little girl.
And then this morning, asked me: "Can I go on a ride with daddy?" And funny that I can respond: "Yes Lilly, we're going to Disney World in 3 weeks. Is that ok?" And a sigh from her, as she's thinking "I'd rather go today!" (Spoiled girl.)
And instead of hitting her favorite theme park, we drove to school. She happily greeted her friends, got in line (cutting in between her two favorite boys), and marched downstairs.
I've never met a kid (or adult!) with more adaptability, resilience, life experiences. Seeing her face in New York City Saturday night at almost 11 PM - glowing, excited to be there, huge smile as she took in the hustle and bustle, as still thinks of it as "home" - was so funny to see. Getting back last night, and being so excited to be in her DC "home" as she ate cantaloupe and cheese and crackers for dinner while we watched Lion King, then took a bath and went to bed. Ready and excited for her next adventure - and totally knowing it won't be too long before we go away again, this time on an airplane, her favorite mode of transportation.
We partially created this world for her, this normalcy in the excitement and adventures of life. But this is what she loves, what she thrives on. I certainly can't handle moving again, or handle new surprises around each corner, but she's ready and willing to do anything.
We keep looking at our pictures from our European adventure this summer, and I am blown away - not just by the places we went and the fun times we had - I mean, those were expected, planned in our itinerary. But what surprises me is how happy Lilly is everywhere. How much she ate up each experience, how she looked so at home in each foreign city. She is the epitome of a "When in Rome" kind of girl.
Her passion for life is one of the coolest things about my girl. And again, I am brought back to the false reality that 5-6 years ago I was thinking: "If my daughter has Down syndrome, will we be limited? Will we be tied down? Will life be hard?" The hardest thing is actually keeping up with her. She certainly has more energy, more drive, for endurance than her mommy. Thank God for that.