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Things My Developmentally Disabled Daughter Has Taught Me About Life...

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1. If someone tells you you can't have it. You pull your pants, along with your princess panties, down to your ankles, lift your hands up in the middle of a crowded Target aisle, scream, "YES I CAN", and wait for someone to buy it for you. This works better if your mom is embarrassed and telling you to stop it right now. That's how you know it's working.

2. When boys call you names, and try to make you feel inferior, you tell them they smell like a diaper toilet, push them down, and climb higher than them on the jungle gym. When you get to the top, tell them you are pretty, and they lost. This crushes them Immensely.

3. There is no chocolate that cannot be found. all it takes is serious dedication, the scaling of a few cabinets, a ladder,a flashlight, and if that fails, ring the neighbors doorbell, she'll have some you can eat.

4. Peeing in your pants is cool. It not only saves you time, and keeps you from having to abandon the work you might be busy doing, but it requires no toilet paper. It saves the environment, and it can even be done while you sleep. multi-tasking.

5. No is not a word in your vocabulary. It does not exist. It's the equivalent of "ask again", "scream louder", "pull your own hair", and if that fails, do it anyway, and wait for your punishment. there is far too much to do in one day, to pay any attention to the word no.

6. Coloring inside the lines is for losers. There are no lines, even the paper cannot contain what you have inside. I'll color on this couch, this floor, these walls, these pants, this toilet paper, God knows I'm not wiping with it, lines are meant to be crossed, and coloring outside of them is the ONLY way to do it.

7. Say exactly what you think, whenever you think it. If you have to poop, scream it. If your poop won't come out, tell everyone. If someone smells funny, tell them. Loudly. Ask women if they are having a baby, when they are clearly far too old, and riding in a motorized cart. Do not control your emotions if someone makes you mad. Tell them. and make sure they hear you. Life wasn't meant to be lived quietly, or with any sense of control.

8. Dance. Dance naked, dance in the shower, dance in the bathroom, because we all know it's not for peeing. Dance in the bus line, dance with your baby doll, dance when you watch TV, dance for the company, dance when you're happy, dance when you're angry, dance in the cart when your mom tells you to sit down, dance like nobody is watching, even though it's evident by the sheer look of horror on your mother's face that EVERYONE most certainly is. Nobody cares. Just dance.

9. Being like everyone else is overrated. You gain nothing from being normal. People will call you different, and you will smile, kids will laugh, and you will laugh too, because it's funny -- you are funny, you don't need their acceptance. You love yourself for who you are. People will stare at your antics, and this will be encouraging to you. Nothing will be worth giving up who you are, just to "fit in". Someone will love you for this difference. But you aren't living for that. you are living for you.

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