Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Something Else the 21st Chromosome is Good For

So, I'm working on journals for next week (I have, unfortunately, finally caught up with what was done ahead of time) and distracting myself with a nifty Flikr group highlighting pictures of folks with Down syndrome, when I run across this.

For those of you who don't want to click on the link, it is a little boy (I'd guess two to three years old) chewing his tumb!

Several years ago, while my mom was chatting with Chaline's mom, they got to talking about medical issues. Somehow, one of them mentioned that neither of them sleep well. Chaline has sleep apnea -- for which they can no longer do surgery like removing her adenoids because she's now on coumadin for her blood clots -- and Chaline's mom mentioned that Chaline chews her thumb while she sleeps!

For years, Patrick always had one or the other thumb in his mouth. He still chews his thumb, but only -- by his own report -- when in the shower and when underwater in our grandpa's pool (why he came up with that rule nobody knows).

The thing is, most kids suck their thumbs. Until Chaline's mom mentioned it, I had never known anyone who chewed their thumb rather than sucked it.

And now I find this little guy.

Seriously, is there a 'thumb chewing' gene somewhere on that 21st chromosome that kicks in when there's three copies of it?

(For the record, from what I can see, neither Superhero, Elastigirl, Princess, nor the Boss chew their thumbs, but still...the fact that of the three people I know (of) who do, all three have Down syndrome is kinda odd.)

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