A day in the life of... normal? -- Cristalee Allan

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A day in the life of... normal?  -- Cristalee Allan
  Gra-a-a-ce, time to wake up! I slowly draw the purple curtains open to let the sunshine in, assisting me in getting Grace to 'rise and shine' - I'll take all the help I can get! As her groggy voice askes if she has school today, I pull a couple of outfit choices from her closet. Her brother and sister are up by now and the house is slowly but surely getting into busy mode. Once her cereal is gone and her teeth are brushed, Grace tosses the idea of either playing with her barbies or getting ready for the school bus to arrive. Almost always, she makes the wrong choice, which leads to the hussle and bustle of racing the clock so she's not late for the bus! Grace's school days consist of being fully intgrated into her grade 3-4 split classroom, with a part-time teacher's aid. Her school is a small one, where everyone knows everyone. She gets high-5's and 'hi Grace' constantly while switching classes or going for recess. The kids (and teachers) love her (most of the time!) and some of them don't even know why - could it be that she is always greeting people, giving a compliment or just being around? Could it be that she is always quick to lend a hand or to cheer her friends on? No, she is not always included - but neither are you or I. No, she doesn't always listen to rules - but neither do you or I. Grace loves being a kid - she loves school (usually), she eats her healthy food first (sometimes), she makes her bed (hardly ever) and this makes life normal, doesn't it? She has scars from being tube-fed as a baby, and from having open-heart surgery to save her life; she isn't quite caught up to her peers in her school work and hasn't quite caught on to some of life's simpler challenges - these also make life normal, don't they? You see, whoever thinks they know the definition of normal really should look inside of a different kind of dictionary - the one in their heart. Then they might just see that there really is no definition of that word - that it doesn't even exist.

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