Meet the Drake family.
With three young children at home, they took the leap to add a much older child to their family, an older child with Down Syndrome.
His name is Bodan and he recently joined the Drake family at a little over 12 1/2 years old. This is the photo that was available when they committed to pursuing the adoption that would bring him home!
I want to thank Mehgan in advance for taking the time to answer these questions for us, with a newly home older institutionalized child, I'm sure spare time is hard to come by.
Boden is cognitively younger than my biological kids, even though he is my oldest child. He is the size of my two youngest kids. I was worried that he could be a threat to them, but that's so far from reality. However, that's just our experience, and not the case for every child.
What does day to day life look like with a post institutional child with Down Syndrome, or how does it vary from the life before they were home? How has it changed over time?
Day to day life has changed in this way: I have to stop, focus, play, and make a better effort. We have re-prioritized. Right now, Boden is still new, and he doesn't interact very much. But I have to stop and sit and be still just to hold him and love on him (which he craves). I have to be patient and get on his level, and teach him how to play, and celebrate every victory. And this is making me so much better than what I was. I am interacting with all the kids more, and we are finding a new normal. Sure, we move in slow motion now, but life is great.