Hi, my name is Joanne. I’m new to #” Mighty Together “and look forward to sharing my story.

Our Daughter was born 10/22/1975. She was our first child and we had no idea about anything possibly happening to our new baby! Shortly after she was born our doctor came in and asked if we saw and held our little girl. We said yes! He asked us what we thought and I answered “she is beautiful “! The doctor replied “Im worried about her, I think she is Mongoloid”. Being only 23 I was not familiar with that word. The doctor said it was a form of retardation! I still hate that word today! A pediatric specialist came to see us the next day! He came into the room did not even introduce himself and continued with no doubt about it, I just came from the nursery and your baby sticks out like a sore thumb! He said have your tubes tied because all your babies would be “vegetable’s”! I told him to leave! The next day my daughter and I and daddy went home! I cried a lot not knowing what to expect! I did know one thing for sure, she was our first child and she would remain with her parents who love her dearly! She has had her share of health issues, open heart surgery at 6 months, 2 eye surgeries at 18 months, (she is classified as legally blind), Tubes in her ears and Thyroid disease! She had radiation treatment for cancer if the Thyroid. She always bounces back and is ready for hugs! We have had her in early childhood education from the age of 18 months old! She is now 46 years old (she loves her birthday)! She is a very happy lady and she loves life! She works 5 days a week and has a boyfriend. They have been an “item” for 12 years. She is very involved with Special Olympics. In 2007 she was one of 16 athletes from our state that was selected for TEAM USA and went to Shanghai, China to compete in Bocce Ball! She came home with 2 silver and 1 bronze medals! In 2010 she was selected to go to the National games held in Nebraska! Again she competed in Bocce Ball and received 1 gold and 2 silver medals! In 2003 she was selected from our state as “Female Athlete of the Year”!.she has made our family grow in Love, Strength and Faith! We have met many life long friends from all over. There have been ups and downs with our daughter but the UP certainly out weights the DOWN times! To new parents…please remember you have a very special person and they will love you more than you could ever imagine! As our daughter says….I don’t have Down Syndrome I have Up Syndrome💙💛💙💛

#trisomy21 #nationaldownsyndromeawareness #somn org