To Elmo, My Son With Down Syndrome's First Friend


Dear Elmo,

Hey there Elmo. I know it is weird hearing from a grown up. I know I don’t really fit your demographic. But OMG I so get the phenomenon of you. Even if I didn’t have kids, I’d be obsessed with your infectious giggle, your cute factor, high pitched inquisitiveness and all that furry redness that is you. You are quite adorable as I am sure you know.

But you are so much more.

To my little son who has Down syndrome, you are his comfort and his friend. He constantly begs to see you on television and sleeps with two small versions of you. We’ve seen you live twice in his 2.5 short years and he now totes a lunch box to school with your charming, dapper, mug on it.

As his mommy, it is my honor to have you strewn about our lives. Because, not only are you fun and so incredibly loved, but you are a decent little monster. I more than catch glimpses of your voice of kindness, sharing and acceptance. I thank my lucky stars for them.

Little boy wearing "sesame Street" pajamas

I hope Judah expects nothing less from all the friends he makes in life. He deserves all the qualities that you are in a friend!

My guess, Elmo, is that he may encounter adversity. He may meet strife in acquiring people… and he may even be looked at as different.

I hope he always remembers you as the standard to judge a friend by.

May he always remember his first friend would unconditionally dole out endearments and root for him with abandoned abundance. May he never forget how his first friend put snuggles before sentences, put love before how you look, and appreciated the deliciousness of difference.

Elmo, you are a game changer. You are what people should be like in this world.

I think the ones who really know you, know that; they know you are more than the monster who likes to be tickled. You are the monster who likes to be tickled because you love to be loved and you love to love. You should be our teachers, our  babysitters and dare I say, our president (unfortunately, you will always be perpetually 3 years old — I know that because I’m a super-fan — so you can’t legally run). But, you can keep doing you my little red hero; you have this whole thing figured out!

Thank you for being our friend.

With Love,

Judah’s Mommy

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

JOIN THE CONVERSATION

Related to Down Syndrome

Empowering My Daughter With Down Syndrome

When I was a little girl, I had a poster on my closet door. It had a picture of Smurfette, briefcase in hand, headed into a door marked “President” with the tagline “Girls Can Do Anything.” I’m not sure I’d call myself a feminist, maybe it’s just the poster talking, but I’ve always believed that: [...]

Holland Was Not a 'Letdown' When My Son Was Born With Down Syndrome

When you have a baby with Down syndrome, well-meaning friends and family send you an essay called, “Welcome to Holland.” It was written by Emily Perl Kingsley — one of the first writers for Children’s Television Workshop and Sesame Street — a personal hero of mine for her work to change the national conversation about [...]

A Letter to Myself Two Years After My Son's Down Syndrome Diagnosis

  Dear me, Wow, two years later and it still takes my breath away thinking about the hours that followed the words, “trisomy 21” and “Down syndrome.” So I know and still vividly remember the way you feel. It’s an intense combination of feeling both numb and feeling like every nerve is raw and exposed. Don’t [...]

How a Soccer Team Included and Befriended My Son With a Disability

Sports are an important part of our culture. They provide entertainment, build communities, encourage strength (mental and physical) and teamwork. There are many benefits to having sports programs, from little leagues up to the professional ranks. As with anything, the fascination with athletics varies from person to person, from sport to sport. I’ll admit, I’m [...]