A voice of experience

I received this email from Katie, mom to four, including an adult daughter with Down syndrome. She writes,

I have just finished reading your book Road Map to Holland. I am the parent of a 25-year-old daughter who has Down syndrome. My 18 and 19-year-old daughters purchased the book for me. (I also have a 27-year-old son). I not only thoroughly enjoyed the book, but I was taken back more that 20 years and it jogged my memory to remember things I had long forgotten (or blocked out?)….

After reading your book, I feel compelled to share some of my stories about having a child with Down syndrome; particularly to share the absolutely positive aspects of this on my daughter’s 3 siblings. My son is a fire fighter/EMT and both of my younger daughters are in college studying to be nurses (one currently wants to be an OB/GYN nurse and the other wants to work in a NICU).

When Stephanie was born, my first thought after being told she might have Down syndrome was to worry about my then 2-year-old son and how this would impact his life. My husband and I agreed that we would strive to have a “normal” family life, for our son’s sake as well as ours. While at this point in time, “normal” probably doesn’t describe us; I think my kids are better than normal and I would love to find a way to convey to families of young children with Down syndrome what a wonderful (although difficult) experience this has been for our family.

It took me over 20 years to answer the question, “Why us?” I now know that her birth into our family has more to do with our other 3 children than it does with either her or my husband and me.

Thank you for sharing your experiences, Katie! As I mentioned to you, I can already feel these things to be true in my own, young family.

2 thoughts on “A voice of experience

  1. I’m with Cate. I’d love to hear more…I think. The fact that she says the experience was difficult does make me a little nervous. I have no doubt that having a brother who has Ds will have a positive impact on my daughters. It is my son’s life that I worry about. I wish she would share what wonderful things her daughter Stephanie is doing.

  2. I’d love to hear more of her stories. I’m always interested in people who are further down the road than I am.

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