Meant To Be


I watch Abby as she sleeps. She’s so pretty. Her big, almond shaped eyes that can’t quite decide if they want to be blue or brown. Her tiny hands and chubby feet. All laid in a quiet ball in my arm. Her breathing is labored, as it usually is when she has a cold, but her body is still.

I’m met with the simple reassurance that this was meant to be.

Abby’s extra chromosome is not a mistake. It’s not an abnormality. She has Down syndrome. She was made that way.

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Casey comes in. It’s been a rough night for all of us. He wiggles his way into my other arm and nuzzles his head into my shoulder. He can’t keep his legs still and his movement wakes up Abby. She opens her eyes with a crusty look on her face, sees who she’s with and her angst explodes into joy. She wriggles out of my arm and climbs over me and pounces on Casey. He laughs and pretends to be put off. He speaks in lines chosen from various TV shows and movies. “She’s just a baby, she doesn’t do much…” he says as he squeezes her and puts her on the ground to resume our snuggle.

I laugh. This was meant to be.

Casey’s autism is not a mistake. It’s not an abormality. He has autism. He was made that way.

My children were born this way. I have come to accept that. Acceptance does not mean that I do not wish my kids had life just a little bit easier. It doesn’t mean that I’m okay with Abby getting sick as much as she does or that I’m okay with watching Casey as he struggles to calm a body that will not be calmed. It does not mean that I don’t work tirelessly to get them the best services to help them on their way. It means that I love my kids for who they are. For who they were born to be.  I want the world to see my kids as Abby and as Casey. Not just as their respective diagnoses. I want people to see them not less and even not more because of the Down syndrome and autism, but as equals.

Just different.

And being different is so good. It’s what gives color, depth and richness to this life. I’m grateful for the things that make me different. I’m grateful for the people that I have met that are so much different than me- because they teach me. Everyone has their own beauty, their own worth and their own need for acceptance for who they are.

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We were not meant to all be the same. We were meant to be different. You were meant to be the person you are. You were born with certain dispositions, a certain way of looking at the world and life has given you the experience to make yourself better. Don’t conform.

You were meant to be, too.

About the writer

Lexi Sweatpants is a writer, wife and mother of four. Her middle son has autism, her daughter has Down syndrome. She has sleep deprivation and a deep passion for candy.  She writes about all of this and more at Lexistential.


Michelle 3 years ago

For a long time only close family and friends knew the extent of my son’s birth traumas. He was born at 27 weeks. at 14 mos its hard to hide Cerebral Palsy so I decided to stop hiding and embrace it and write about it to inspire others – but my fear was always – what will happen if people know – they won’t see him as himself but as Cerebral Palsy or the kid with the brain bleed and there would always be pity in their eyes for our hard life.. and I guess its true. It will happen. There will be those who look at the diagnosis and stop – and there will be others that look further, into his heart. And there will be those who hear his story and are inspired to fight another day. And I think I finally beat the fear.

Arnebya 3 years ago

WHY is it so hard for us to sometimes accept our differences? Difference is what makes the world interesting. I know I wouldn’t want to live in a world full of other people just like me (well, I’m not the best example because I’m fabulous. But! It did take me a long time to accept that. :o) )

This post is gorgeous as are your children and your outlook and what I suspect will be their lives.

Mama D 3 years ago

Beautiful! I love this. Meant to be, indeed.

Cheri K 3 years ago


Leighann 3 years ago

I write about my struggle with bipolar a d mental illness stigma. You have hot the nail in the head.
And you’ve done it in an incredibly beautiful way.
Thank you for writing a post that resonates.
We are meant to be this way.
We’re here because we’re meant to be.
I wish you knew how incredibly important your message is today

Momchalant 3 years ago

This is beautiful. I’m right there with you that is was meant to be. Everyone has a purpose, including your two beautiful children. They’ll touch people’s lives in a way that no one else can.

Debbie 3 years ago

Oh Lexi, thank you for sharing your beautiful story and children. Yes, they are very special and so are you. God, would not have blessed you with these beautiful children, if it weren’t for your special beauty.
Thank you again you are an inspiration to all.

Michelle 3 years ago

The picture of your children is prescious!

Autism and Oughtisms 3 years ago

Really touching <3

Merri Lewis 3 years ago

I love this! I have 2 out of 4 with autism, and I agree 100% :)

Shay Trashay 3 years ago

What a beautiful message, and one that really hit home, as some friends and I were just talking about this last night. Sometimes it’s so hard to accept ourselves as we are, but if we know that we are being the best person we can be, there’s not a whole lot else we can do about it. We are who we are. I always say, “I’ve tried to change. I’ve tried not to be so loud and goofy…but it’s just how God made me.” Thanks for the post. Lovely!!

Fi 3 years ago


Jenn 3 years ago

Beautifully said and so true. Have you read the book Love, Anthony? It is a great book. I was at the library two weeks ago and as I was scanning the new books shelf I kept getting drawn back to this book. I never read the synopsis on books because they kinda ruin the surprise for me so I had no idea what it was about when I picked it up but I’m so glad I did. Make sure you have tissues on hand because you will cry. But give it a read, it is really good.

Patty 3 years ago

I love this post so much, I can’t even adequately express it. Thank you for sharing it, Lexi. It made my day, especially the last line, “You were meant to be, too.” It’s so easy for me to see why my kids are wonderful and perfect, but to see that I am meant to be, despite all my shortcomings, is so much harder!

Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense 3 years ago

I really don’t think this post could be any more awesome than it is.

Laura 3 years ago

Beautiful, and perfect! I understand completely what you’re saying. My daughter has a very rare form of dwarfism — we didn’t even have a diagnosis until she was 6 — and it’s been a struggle helping her learn to cope with a world that looks right over the top of her head (or, worse yet, pats her on the head like she’s a dog). She’s turned out perfectly, even if she’s not the tall, slim, willowy daughter I always expected to have. She’s her own person, and I wouldn’t have her any other way.

Amanda 3 years ago

Just as this post was meant to be read by as many people as possible. What a gift of perspective for anyone, parent or non-parent. Thank you.

Amy 3 years ago

So well said. I wish more people saw the wonerful side of these children instead of “their diseases”.
Good Luck mom

jillsmo 3 years ago


LDiggitty 3 years ago

Absolutely. Thank you for sharing! This is exactly what I needed to hear today… my 23 year old brother lives with my husband and I and is autistic, so things can get a little frustrating at times. It’s an excellent reminder for me that he’s exactly who he’s supposed to be…

Liv 3 years ago

This post was beautifully written. Definitely puts motherhood into perspective as a reminder of how we were each chosen to be the mamas to our beautiful children. We have to live each day remembering that. Beautiful picture Lexi

Lollie ~ The Fortuitous Housewife 3 years ago

Your eloquent words beautifully express the depth of your love for your wonderful children. You inspire me to not just work to accept the challenges life presents, but to embrace them fully.

OneTiredMama 3 years ago

Beautiful! You’re kids are precious :)

Annette 3 years ago

Your children are so blessed to have you as their mommy.

Theresa 3 years ago

Beautiful picture of the two of them!

Kristin 3 years ago

I could not love this post more. It is absolutely beautiful. Thank you Lexi.

Jessica 3 years ago

This is gorgeous Lex, so much love to you.

Niksmom 3 years ago

Amen. The simplicity of a mothers love always surmount to the day to day struggles. I love how you always keep your eye on the big picture. Even more? I love the love between your children. Beautiful.

tracy@sellabitmum 3 years ago

So incredibly beautiful. xoxo

Mercy 3 years ago

Beautiful! Your children are blessed with a special mommy who understands them.

Andrea 3 years ago

I love this. As a fellow mother of 4 I know that there are joys and challenges to this role. Your children are blessed to have you, as you are blessed to have them :)

On a lighter note, I am secretly jealous that I did not think to add ‘sweatpants’ to my blogging name.

Nichole 3 years ago

Love this. A mother’s love is always simply true love.

Andie 3 years ago

Absolutely amazing. It is hard as moms to remember this. Especially when the world expects so much. Being enough is wonderful too! :)

Gingersnap 3 years ago

My kids are both on the spectrum. They also speak in movie lines. I’m glad I do too!

Toni 3 years ago

My daughter was diagnosed as being on the spectrum just a few days ago. I needed to read this now. Thanks so much.

Amy K. 3 years ago

So beautiful! We should all be lucky enough to be accepted & appreciated like this.

Danica Surette 3 years ago

I absolutely love your post!!!
This is an excerpt from my book “Brynn’s Bizarre Behavior”.

Sometimes I’m sad
I was born this way,
different from others
like night is from day…

But I’m smart and I’m growing
and funny as can be.
I thank God each night
for making special me.

“Brynn’s Bizarre Behavior” has been selected as a finalist for “Favorite New Special-Needs Children’s Book 2013” in the Readers’ Choice Awards. Vote once a day until March 19th at:

Alexis 3 years ago

That is a lovely post that is almost out shined by a heartwrenchingly beautiful picture. Thanks for sharing.

Stephanie 3 years ago

Oh, my heart. What a beautiful post.

Amy @mommetime 3 years ago

Beautiful… absolutely beautiful and lovely, and the picture of your little ones is adorable!

jackiee 3 years ago


Natasha 3 years ago

This is such a beautiful post! Thank you so much for sharing. The picture of your kids together is absolutely touching and beautiful, beyond words.

Pernilla 3 years ago

Beautiful. That picture make me tear up in a good way.

Susan 3 years ago

Beautiful! I was so moved by the heart-felt words! We are all different and have our own set of problems but we sometimes forget that.

Rebecca 3 years ago


Alison 3 years ago

Beautiful post, Lexi, as is the photo of your kids.

Deborah / Mom2Michael 3 years ago

Wonderful. A beautiful post about beautiful children

Shannon- Mommy Has Issues 3 years ago

The best post ever!!! My 5yr old is blind and autistic. That’s what my blog is about, my journey to acceptance. Different is okay. Different is beautiful and amazing!!! Great post!!! Thank you!

Kat 3 years ago

Beautiful….. that’s all.

Christina Allred 3 years ago

Always beautiful thoughts from Lexi… thank you, girlie.

Mary 3 years ago

That picture of her two children is just too precious.


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