Last night Luke and I took Phoenix out for dinner and Christmas shopping. This was the first time I had taken Phoenix out since we got back from Dallas almost 2 weeks ago. To say I was nervous was an understatement. Not only did she just have surgery, but she looks really different now – and let’s face it there are really mean people out there. We walk into Chick fil’ A and there are 3 teenage girls standing in line, we walk past them to find a table before ordering and one of them sees Phoenix and starts giggling. As Luke and I are getting Phoenix settled and figuring out what we want I notice that the girl is not only still giggling, but now she is pointing and showing her friends and they start giggling too. I tried to remain calm. But I stared them down till the first girl saw me, and I said, “Hi.” Sternly. She giggled, “Hi” then turned around and kept giggling.
I wish I could say I didn’t break down and cry in the restaurant, but that would be lying. Definitely, got some sympathetic looks from the other customers around us. We also received a cash gift from one of the people in the drive thru and Chick fil’ A gave us extra food. The extra food was great, because Phoenix choose that meal to get her appetite back and was eating everything in site.
Thankfully, the story doesn’t stop there. While we were eating another family came into Chick fil’ A with a daughter who was the same age as Phoenix and had Down Syndrome . We were able to talk about our daughters and where able to understand what the other was going through. They asked about Phoenix and we got to hear their story – they adopted their little one because the mother grew up with girl with Downs and held a special place in her heart for special needs kids.
I have to say though, that has been one of the most unique experiences we have had. While it did suck that those girls were to wrapped up in themselves to realize they were laughing at a baby, it was wonderful to meet another family who shares similar struggles as we do.