Froggie’s life has value!

In CategoryDown syndrome, In the News, Pregnancy & Childbirth

New prenatal tests are giving more and more families a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome. Some parents are happy to have the extra time to prepare for everything an extra chromosome means.  For other parents the diagnosis will result in termination of the pregnancy.  I have heard many officials state they don’t believe the abortion rate will go up as a result of these tests.  I say bull.  I am certain more mothers will choose to abort.

To me this is not an abortion issue on the broader scale. It is an issue of aborting children solely on the basis of a Down syndrome diagnosis. I don’t usually share these types of feeling because friends and family may not understand or have experience with how important this issue is. Many of you reading this did have that prenatal testing with the idea of aborting your baby if he or she was not perfect. I am sure some of you did abort a baby with a Ds diagnosis. This is not to shame you. The more we know the better we do.

Below is a segment from 60 Minutes in New Zealand. A father in the video puts it beautiful when he says “I want my daughter to live in a society that values her life.” He hit the nail on the head. When people abort only because of this diagnosis they are saying that people with Down syndrome are less than other people. I will not accept that. Froggie is one of the most beautiful people I have ever met. He has so much to offer this world. There IS a place in this world for him and others like him. He has the same value as any other child.

I have never publicly stated my views on abortion because it just divides and causes arguments. I will say I am completely against people aborting simply because of a Ds diagnosis.  Unless there is another condition that is not compatible with life people should not be able to abort babies they perceive as less than perfect (cause Froggie is perfect). To me this is the same as aborting a baby because the baby will have green eyes instead of blue or brown hair instead of red. We don’t get to choose who are children are.  We do get the honor of nurturing them, guiding them, loving them and raising adults we can be proud of.

Froggie's being worn on my back on Christmas Eve!

Froggie being worn on my back on Christmas Eve!

If someone has a diagnosis of Down syndrome there is support.  This website has lots of information:

If you are the current parent of a child or adult with Ds in California check out CAPODs:

If you choose not to keep your child Reece’s Rainbow is an organization dedicated to placing children with Ds.  There are so many families waiting for child with Ds!

Having a child with Ds is not what I planned. I had so many incorrect assumptions about what a person with Ds was capable of and what they were like.  I am so blessed to be a part of this community.  When I was pregnant someone said to me: “Welcome to the best community you never knew you wanted to be a part of” and I find myself saying those same words when I speak with new families.  It is so true!

They took a great new photo!

In CategoryIn the News

That horrible school photo I wrote about has been re-taken.  I LOVE the new photo and applaud the photography company and school for making it right!

new photo

Miles is sitting in the front row on the right being supported by his caregiver.

Wouldn’t it be great if all kids with all abilities could be this easily included?  Just do a redo!  Think of all the IEP meetings, mediation and court cases that could be avoided if the school districts just said “oops sorry about that, let’s try again”!

I will continue teaching my boys that all children and adults are valuable human beings regardless of their abilities or differences.  But the day is coming when I will have to discuss with them that not everyone feels the same way.  That will be a sad day.


Inclusion. Why is this so hard?

In CategoryIn the News

While scrolling through Facebook last night I saw this story several times.

with this picture:

 inclusion 1



 This is a school class picture. This is wrong.  Period. The boy on the end that is separated from his class is a 7 year old named Miles.

How could the photographer not see how wrong this is?

I asked Peanut (age 6) last night what was wrong with this picture.  He said their faces are all missing.  I told him he was right and asked what else was wrong with it.  He said “that boy (pointing to Miles) wants to be with his friends”.  Well there you have it folks.  Simple as pie, right? So why is this so hard for the rest of the world?

I think this picture is a really good indicator of what is wrong with American schools.  If your kids is typically abled and willing to fit into the school district’s pegs than your child will do fine.  However, if your child is differently abled or a square peg then that child is often excluded.

I firmly believe in inclusion.  I believed in inclusion before Froggie was born.  Peanut goes to a charter school that is 20% differently abled and 80% typical.  We are very fortunate that Froggie will go there in Kindergarten because of sibling preference. Bug goes to a regular neighborhood school where most the kids look and act typical.  You would never know there is special day class on campus, a room where they put children who have different abilities.  Bug attended this school since 1st grade.  I never even knew they were there until the end of 3rd grade.  Never saw them.  Bug didn’t know this class existed either.  So clearly these kids are not being included at all.

I learned of their existence on this campus when there was an award ceremony and a girl from this class received an award with some of the other 3rd graders.  She came in separate, sat separate, received her award separately and left the ceremony early.  It was clear to all the parents there that something was different about this girl.  The parents even discussed it among themselves wondering what class she was from and why she was treated differently.

We have a long way to go towards equality in this country.  Just recently a young man named Ethan was murdered.  The coroner declared it murder but there is no investigation.  Why? Many feel this is because Ethan had Down syndrome.  The implication is that Ethan’s life has less value than someone with typical abilities. How is this even remotely okay? If you want to know about Ethan you can look HERE.

Another Mom wrote a blog post suggesting that parents of kids with typical abilities request that the school put differently abled children in class with their typical children.  I think this is a great idea and challenge you to do this!  Check out this blog post about this idea: