Tuesday, May 11, 2010


today after storytime in the library play area maya bit a little girl on the arm.  i was so sad, frustrated, angry, and embarrassed.  poor little girl had all of maya's teeth marks on her arm...oh it was so sad.  i really felt like crying when i apologized to the mom and the little girl.  i tried to tell maya to say sorry and told her that she hurt the little girl. maya didn't seem to understand at all what she had done. the mother was so nice about it, but i could see many of the other mom's staring at us.  i felt horrible.  what did they think of us?  were they judging us, because it sure did seem so.  i apologized profusely for my daughters actions, but none of that will take away the impression she made on everyone there. 

i immediately went to that place of worry, is my daughter doing this because she has down syndrome?   how will she be able to interact with others if she is biting and pulling everyone's hair? no one will want to be her friend or mine.

in the car i started to feel very lonely.  yes, she is just a toddler, but she has down syndrome also.  and this effects me in many ways.  it feels like a lonely road these days, there doesn't seem to be anyone i can talk to about this.  she is not walking yet, not talking, and when i see other mom's with their kids in our mom's group, i see how their children run and play.  they climb the stairs and slide down the big slides, they play in the sand together.  it all seems so normal and wonderful.  i am trying to give maya every opportunity to be there, but sometimes, days like today, i am tired of always having to watch her, always worrying that she will hurt herself or throw something and hit someone accidentally. i know this is just a phase, it's not like she does it all the time. they say every child goes through these things, but today i feel powerless.  and it bugs the hell out of me! 

so there it is, maybe just a little venting will do me some good. tomorrow will be another day, a better day i hope.


Erin said...

I'm so sorry that you had a hard day. I understand your worry and frustrations. I just thought I would let you know that when my "typical" daughter was Maya's age, I was always afraid to take her places because I thought she would make a scene. I really think it's just the age. I bet every one of those moms have gone through a similar incident with their child.

There are times when I feel lonely too and long to be around people who really understand.

"Hugs" One day at a time - that's my motto.

Michelle said...

You are not alone, honey, for there are those of us that have been there before you and those that will come after.
Matthew bit another child, his aide and his teacher several weeks ago when at school (at separate times). It doesn't make it any easier when you know them and have known them for a couple years. Or any easier that he's older and should know better. I think sometimes, with him, it's just a reaction and he doesn't really know that he's doing it until it's over.
It ebbs and flows with me. Sometimes all seems so very normal and then something will slap me upside the face to remind me that it's not just like all the rest.
And that's ok. It has to be, for that's just the way it is. Just the way things are.
But you are never alone, Jo Ann. I'm just an e-mail/phone call away!

Rosa said...

I am sorry you had this bad situation. As Erin, I think it is the age regardless the syndrome. When I was little around the same age than Maya, I used to bite my sister. I didn't stop until I was about 3 years old. I stopped after a lot of time outs.

The way I make my son to say sorry if he bites me or does something to someone else is with a kiss and a hug because he verbally cannot say sorry. What I do is giving him the verbal cue. For example: "You have to say sorry with a kiss and a hug." I wait about 10 seconds (I count until 10 in my mind to let him to process the instruction) If he doesn't obey, I repeat the verbal cue and count until 10 until he does it. Other way I use for him to follow the instruction is counting aloud 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 and give the verbal cue. It works most of the time.

Maya is a child regardless the syndrome and biting is part of early childhood. I found the article "Biting: Why it happens and what to do about it" in babycenter.com because I want to be ready if my son bites other child. I want to share it with you. Here is the link: http://www.babycenter.com/0_biting-why-it-happens-and-what-to-do-about-it_63713.bc

Kisses and hugs!

evrfwd said...

Thanks ladies! You are all so sweet for being here. I really wanted to write about this episode because it is part of my life. The good and the extremely difficult times are what bring us together. It was a low day, but today things are better. And I'm glad for this community of mothers who I can share my worries to without judgement.

Unknown said...

So sorry you had such a difficult day. I understand how you feel. I have days I feel just the same. Hope today has been much better.

Maya said...

You already got some great advice but I'll chime in here too.

I remember those days, those days at the library or the playground or the mom's group. It can be very, very hard. And yes, lonely. You said it.

For what it's worth, my 46-choromsome daughter went through a terrible biting stage, while my son with DS never bit anyone, so I definitely don't think you need to blame the DS (though I can understand doing so, I tend to blame all the "bad" stuff on it).

Keep your chin up. There will be harder days and better days but know that you're not alone. Those eyes of the other moms can feel harsh and stinging sometimes. Hang in there!
PS. I love your daughter's name!