March 21st has always been a very special day for me. It was the day that my brother entered the world and attempted to make my childhood full of sibling rivalry and love. He was my playmate and is now one of my closest friends. Evening more meaning was added to the date March 21st when Ellie was born. March 21st is recognized as World Down Syndrome Day. A day chosen because it represents the three copies of the 21st chromosome. Get it? 3-21!
|My brother Matt when Ellie was just 3 months old.|
This year is even more exciting. This is the first year that the United Nations is recognizing today as World Down Syndrome Day. Seven years ago, our communities started celebrating today and now, it is officially recognized by the UN. Not that we really needed the UN to approve this day or anything, but it is lovely to have such recognition.
|Andrew and Ellie: Buddy Walk 10/11|
|Three Generations: Grandma Awa, Ellie, and Anna|
I love the first video because it features children with Ds from countries I never even heard of (yes, I clearly need a social studies and geography lesson). It is beautiful to see these children in the classroom. Learning. With other children.
The second video is unique in that it shows the parents of children with Ds. Parents with inspiring messages. What would they would go back and say to themselves when they first learned of their child's diagnosis. I especially like the one that says "Normal is a setting on a washing machine". So true!
Going back 2.5 years ago, what would I say to myself? "There is no such thing as normal, but there is amazing. My daughter is amazing and perfect. It will be okay. For she and you are stronger than you think."
From my family to yours, wherever you may be: Happy World Down Syndrome Day!
Down Syndrome Map: Let Us In-I Want to Learn
2+1 = 3
IDSC for Life: All Life Is Precious
What would you say to yourself if you could go back?
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