Over Christmas we were able to see Kyle's brother and his family.
We only get to see them once a year, maybe twice if we are lucky.
Brielle is a recently-turned 7 year old and Emmelyn is two weeks younger than Maddie yet twice her size :)
In past years, meeting up with her cousins and has been a bit of a shock to Maddie's system.
She would often have her hands over her ears declaring, "it's too loud" :)
This year was very different.
Maddie was ready and excited to play.
A day or two into our visit, Brielle pulled her Daddy aside for a serious conversation about Maddie.
Brielle: Daddy, am I like Maddie where some things are harder for me to do?
Brielle's Daddy: No, Brielle, you and Maddie are a little different.
[With big tears in her eyes] Brielle: But does that mean I can't love like Maddie because I want to love as much as she does.
Her Daddy reassured her she can love just like Maddie does even though they may be a little different.
As Ryan was telling us all the story, it occurred to us that no one had ever told Brielle Maddie had Down Syndrome.
This was her complete, unbiased perspective and observation.
If only we all had a heart like Brielle's!
And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven."
I'm pretty sure Jesus was talking about kids like Brielle. :)