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PADS - Getting to Know Me for World Down Syndrome Awareness Month (#PADSGTKM) 'Our Story'

By Jess

I started this blog after Frida was born and I had a lot to say. Since March I’ve not felt like I’ve had much to share with the wider world - we’ve just been cracking on with the business of raising our two brilliant girls and getting to grips with the 'new normal' as we came out of over a year of being restricted in what we can do by the impact of COVID-19. Blimey hasn't it been busy?

As it is World Down Syndrome Awareness Month I may drop in occasionally with a few updates so we can share the good work being done by Positive About Down Syndrome (PADS) using the hashtag #PADSGTKM. A lot of what we do to support Frida comes from PADS so this month seems like a good opportunity to share a few updates to remind everyone that Down syndrome in itself is not something to be worried about any more than raising any other child into adulthood. PADS has suggested a set of topics to post about every day. I was thinking about sharing a little about what Frida is up to right now anyway, to draw attention to the fact that it is World Down Syndrome Awareness Month, yet as ever PADS has done the thinking for me.

The first thing to do is to share ‘Our story’:

We have 2 girls. Ada, who is nearly 5 and has just started school and loves it. She loves ballet, chatting, reading, drawing, hugging her friends and Netflix. She is bright and determined, learns quickly and feels keenly. Frida, who is 14 months and has just started a day a week at nursery and has settled really well, enjoying making new friends and playing with others. She is bright and determined, a quick crawler, has found her voice and an aptitude for using Makaton signs to make herself understood. She loves books, saying 'ahhhhh' as she strokes our dog Billy quite forcefully, relocating objects around the house and investigating bins and dog bowls. They both make us laugh every day. Their love for each other is spectacular.

Frida happens to have Down syndrome. We found out this would be likely when I was 16 weeks pregnant. Once all major health issues had been ruled out, we were nothing but excited for her to join our family.

Our life is not that different to many of our mates with neurotypical kids. We are happy. We get angry and sad and everything in between. We hang out at home and play a lot, enjoy days out and visiting friends and family. We have fun together. We put a lot in to Frida’s early development but we did and do the same for Ada. We have seen huge benefits to both of them for doing so. We’ve met a lot of awesome people through having both girls and found our tribe of wonderful families via Positive About Down Syndrome

We are excited to see what both of our girls experience and enjoy as they grow and will be beside them, supporting and championing them both, every step of the way.