How a Down Syndrome Child Saved Me

at 10:43 PM

As fate designed it, this time I had a very special admission in my drama class here in Fremont - Abraham. Abraham has Down Syndrome.

I have no shame in admitting that it had been a bit of a challenge for me to accept him in my class; also the underlying fear of how the "normal" children and their parents would take it. But I guess our adult minds are more judgmental than the embracing minds of children.

Abraham responded to the theater games as if he was always meant to do them. And when he proved himself to be the best leader in my leadership game, it left us all pleasantly surprised. When I begin my theater classes, my first exercise is a name exercise. You have to speak out your name clearly, loudly and give it a tonal connotation. I have never had a student in my class in the past 15 years who in the first go would enunciate his name so clearly "Ab-ra-ham." Abraham. Abraham. It still echoes in my heart!

Abraham wakes up every morning and asks to go for his drama class. Drama class may have been therapeutic for him but for me, it's even beyond that. Just about two years back I was in the middle of a very difficult pregnancy. I usually refrain from talking about it because the outcome was priceless. While I was pregnant I was always scared of having a baby with Down syndrome. I would pray for a healthy baby amidst my complications. Little did I know, whatever is His creation is a masterpiece. My journey with Abraham taught me to go beyond the should's and should not's, the have's and not have's, the do's and don'ts.

You healed me, Abraham. Thank you!

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With a Perspective, I am Ish Amitoj Kaur.

Ish Amitoj Kaur is a filmaker and theater activist.