This is a long list, but I'll try to pick the most important (and fun). I would like for Tera to have our sense of humor. Tom and I have been through some tough times together and even in the hardest of times, we've tried to use laughter and our sense of humor to get us through it. We utilize it now probably more than ever to deal with the difficult times with Tera and I want her to be able to do the same thing.
I hope she inherits our love of hockey. This would really just be more convenient than anything because it's the only sport we've ever really pictured her playing. Plus, we both know the sport so we wouldn't have to learn anything new and we already have lots of jerseys so we wouldn't have to buy any new fan paraphanalia. It would be nice if she liked the same teams as us, but I suppose we can allow a little flexibility. And really, it would just be a nice, bloody, violent family bonding activity.
I would like to pass down the importance of hard work. I've had to work hard for many things in my life and try not to take too much for granted. Tom and I have already promised each other we would provide everything we can to Tera, but I also want her to understand that things don't just happen, you have to make them happen. Based on what I can guess about the struggles she will most likely endure, I can also guess she'll understand hard work better than a lot of people.
I think Star Wars goes without saying. We pretty much figured that since she wakes up and falls asleep to the movie characters and posters every day, she won't know anything but a love for "The Triology".
My love of cleaning. This kid has never once flinched from the sound of the vacuum and I believe it's because since she could hear anything from in the womb, it's been a comforting, familiar sound. Even after she was born I used to be able to get her to fall asleep if I turned on the Swifter. Her current obsession is checking under all the rugs. I believe this is her way of telling me to stay on my game because she's always watching. I haven't started using bleach on things yet, but if I continue to follow along the footsteps of my mom, it won't be long. When people look back on their childhoods, they often think of familiar smells like cookies baking or their mom's perfume; I think of Clorox. Don't get me wrong, I also loved her cookies and perfume (in fact after she holds Tera I can always smell it on her and it always makes me smile), but bleach is really her forte. With any luck, my daughter will be the clean freak, neurotic straightner, and obsessive vacuumer that her mom and Nani are.
Maybe tomorrow I'll be more sentimental.
People with Down syndrome have their own unique talents and abilities – just like everybody else!