Who I Am - World Down Syndrome Day

I am...miles and miles of smiles!
The International Down Syndrome Coalition put together this beautiful video to celebrate World Down Syndrome Day. I couldn't help but tear up when I saw this video thinking James truly is everything I never knew I wanted.

A year ago I had never heard of World Down Syndrome Day and certainly never thought I would be celebrating it. I never imagined I would be living the life with my lil grommie that I am. The reality was I never really thought much about Down syndrome. I knew what it was, I had met people with Ds, but that was about the extent. I had often said I wouldn't have kids until I was ready to raise a child with special needs, but I didn't think it was really going to happen. Looking back I can't imagine things being any other way. I know we have some rough times ahead of us. I know not everyone will be as accepting of James as most people have been. There will come a day when someone makes fun of him or makes ignorant comments about him. I hope I will have the grace to handle it respectfully. But today is about celebrating all the good moments, the huge smiles, the open mouth kisses, the determination and the wonderful spirit James has. He is truly our lil champion and today is about champions.

"don't give up on me, I won't give up on you, just believe in me, like I believe in you" -michael franti

I am...a champion!
A sparkle in his eyes and in his heart
James has taught me to slow down. To appreciate all the little things, the things I used to take for granted. He has shown me the real meaning in hard work. He has taught me what really matters in life. And he has taught me unconditional love. He melts your heart with his miles of smiles. How can you look at a face like that and wish for anything else. He is absolutely perfect!

Just like any other parent I want to do everything I can to help James. I want people to accept him and I want to help further research that will help James live a more independent life. And so I'm doing what I can to help bring awareness to the need for research and to help fund research. It just so happens I can do that through running. The best part is it has helped my running. Those days we all know that we don't really feel like going for a run, or late in a race when everything hurts, I just think of James and tell myself that every step I take is going to help him. So today I'm going to run for all those who wake up each day and face adversity head on, for those who don't things don't come as easily to, for those who face their challenges with nothing but a smile, a big heart and an incredible amount of determination. I'm going to charge that hill climb for all its worth and I'm going to run hard for James.

"to give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift" -steve prefontaine


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