Special Feature Our Story – Nothing Down About It
We were so excited to meet this month’s joyful cover kids, Olivia and Emma, and are honoured that their moms are sharing their stories with us. We asked them to share about their wonderful lives with a daughter with Down Syndrome, and why advocating is important to them.
From Olivia’s Mom, Ashley:
Her sassy personality, big goofy smile, chubby yet delicate hands, piercing blue eyes speckled with brush field spots, long strawberry blonde hair, her big bear hugs, her fighting spirit, her determination to succeed, and her ability to make anyone laugh at any given moment are just a few of the things that I love and adore about Olivia.
Four years into being a Mom to a little one rocking an extra chromosome and I’ve still barely scratched the surface, but I can tell you that she has exceeded every expectation and dream I’ve ever had. Due to society and the lack of information surrounding Down Syndrome, it may sound scary, and overwhelming, but I promise you that it’s the furthest thing from that.
The reason why I advocate, fight for inclusion, and continue to shout her worth every day is so that we can one day change others perspectives. No, it’s not always sunshine and rainbows, but the joyous moments far outweigh any of the rough patches. Sometimes though, even when we try to educate, it falls on deaf ears, but even that is not enough to silence me.
In the end, no matter what I say or do, it’s Olivia that will be the one changing the views of other people and the world deserves more people like her. She is my world, my best friend, and the girl who made me a Mom. She radiates magic, light, and warmth and I know that together we can work on making this world a far more inclusive and accepting place to be.
From Emma’s Mom, Melissa:
At 8:00PM on August 8th, 2018 an emergency exit and a tiny infant’s sneeze changed our world forever. Chaos had surrounded us moments before, but now everything seemed calm and right. It’s as if our family of three took a big sigh of relief together for the first time.
Emma’s suspected diagnosis was confirmed as Mosaic Down Syndrome, but it didn’t matter. We knew from the moment she arrived that – regardless of any chromosomal differences – her light would shine as bright as her sky-blue eyes.
As I spent my days fawning over our teeny beauty, a protective instinct started building within me. I watched our girl grow and saw in her a happiness developing that was so pure and precious I felt driven to do whatever I could to make sure she receives the same unwavering kindness that she gives others. She deserves patience, acceptance, and respect. Even though she is more alike than different, there are people who will treat her as less than equal and that is why advocating became important to me.
Emma has an aura about her that is impossible to explain. Watching her smile at strangers and spread joy like magic is what motivates me to help break down barriers that stand in her way because she is differently abled. I have new purpose now and every time I look into those beautiful almond shaped eyes, I am reminded of it.