October is Down syndrome awareness month, I was unaware of this up until last year, when at 17 weeks pregnant my baby was diagnosed with Down syndrome.
Prior to finding out about my baby’s diagnosis, I was very unaware of what Down syndrome was. I had been around people with Down syndrome at one of the swim classes I used to life guard for back in college and at one point in my life, a family who had a 10 year old girl with Down syndrome came to live at my parents house for a few weeks, but I didn’t really understand what Down syndrome was.
Down syndrome occurs at conception. Babies with Down syndrome have Down syndrome the moment they are conceived.
According to the National Down syndrome society, “Down syndrome occurs when an an individual has a full or partial extra copy of chromosome 21.”
A typical baby has 46 chromosomes, they inherit 23 chromosomes from their mother and 23 chromosomes from their father. A baby with Down syndrome has an extra copy of chromosome 21, giving them 47 chromosomes.
Down syndrome is not a disease; individuals with Down syndrome are not “suffering” from Down syndrome.
Individuals with Down syndrome are LIVING with Down syndrome.
Individuals with Down syndromes are our sons and daughters, sister and brothers, aunts and uncles and cute baby cousins.
Individuals with Down syndrome, go to school, have jobs, and get married.
Individuals with Down syndrome are dreamers and artists and athletes.
Individuals with Down syndrome have a bright future.
I am not an expert on Down syndrome. I am a parent to a child with Down syndrome and I am learning about Down syndrome everyday.
This month, I will be sharing with you all about Down syndrome. My posts will be 31 for 21. The 31 one stands for the 31 days in October and 21, for the extra copy of the 21st chromosome present in individuals with Down syndrome.
My son, Royal Max Holliday has Down syndrome and his Papa and I love him so much.
You don’t have to feel sorry, sad, or bad for us. Royal was made just for us and we are very proud of being his parents.
Join us this month to learn more about Down syndrome.