Friday, March 22, 2013

...a little something extra

It has never been my intention to make this a blog about Down Syndrome. When I first started Mugwump Woolies I hesitated to even mention it...but then little by little...well, it is part of my life and it crept in here and there. 

Yesterday, March 21st was Down Syndrome Awareness Day. In truth, I have never really heard much about this day before, but it popped up on a blog I follow so here I am talking about it.

I am always more than happy to answer questions about our experience with Down Syndrome, to help educate, inform...whatever. But today, I thought I'd "advocate" a little...even though I'm a day late. 

As the mother of the lovely young lady above, there are a few things that really get me peeved. First and foremost...the r-word. It is out there in movies and t.v. shows, politicians and comedians use it... I've had people I know use it in everyday conversations. I won't bore you with my many experiences with this ugly, hurtful word and the damage it does. Please don't use it...teach your children not to use it.

Next, I have a daughter with Down Syndrome...not a Down Syndrome daughter. Please, recognize the humanity first...and then the diagnosis. Down Syndrome does not define my daughter...she is so much more than an extra chromosome.

Lastly, teach your children...grandchildren...not to stare. I have seen kids, literally, walk into walls while staring at my daughter. It hurts. Kids are kids, they need parents to teach them appropriate behavior in dealing with all people...including those with special needs.

O.K. I'm done. This was difficult to write, but if it helps even a little it is more than worth my while. It is not my intention to offend, rather, only to enlighten.


Have a great weekend!

Enjoy the evening,


  1. What a cute patootie :) Thanks for sharing!
    Looks MUCH warmer in your little corner of the world.
    Hugs :)

  2. Robyn, your message is heard loud and clear. You and your husband have raised a beautiful young women who has much to offer. Sadly, ignorance and intolerance still remains in this day and age. It is their loss. I can see Spring has sprung in your beautiful home, oh...I do love that rug you are hooking...Hugs from Maine, Julie.

  3. Hi Robyn.... I thought your post was wonderful.... While I don't have a child with downs syndrome, I do have 2 daugthers who work with children with autism.... One of the first things I learned from my middle daughter (who is a teacher, trainer, and a behavioral therapist) is to never refer to these children as "autistic children," but as you pointed out they are children with autism. And my girls will take on anyone who uses the R word... even friends and people they have just met.....They are wonderful advocates, and I believe they have educated everyone around them.... just as you are doing in this post.... we all need to stop and think about the words we use and how we might be hurting others...
    Your daughter is beautiful... and I know she is the light of your life! Happy weekend....

  4. This is a wonderful post. You have a beautiful daughter, first and foremost.

  5. Your daughter is so sweet and pretty. Thank you for this information. I had a cousin with Prader-Willi Syndrome(highly unheard of) so I understand much of what you wrote today. This
    is a marvelous and much needed post. Thank you so much!


  6. Wonderful post Robyn and well said. Your daughter has a contagious smile! Thank you for the "enlighening" words.

  7. Robyn, I'm glad that you are writing about about Down Syndrome on your post today to raise awareness. I know that there are many ignorant people who have no manners and are hurtful. Your daughter has always come across as a very pretty and sweet young lady. She always looks smiling and happy and has been in many more beautiful places than I ever will.

    Our Co-op has employed a man with Down Syndrome for years and he is the one in care of stacking eggs on the shelves and he does such a careful job. I've never had to worry about cracked eggs. He also has other duties to do and is very reliable. We all love him. He's friendly.

    I have two grandchildren with Asperger Syndrome and one of them is more affected than the other. They both are so very talented and intelligent but suffer in the social skills area. For them it's difficult to understand why people don't think like they do. It's hasn't been easy for them either so I totally understand. Sometimes I hurt too.


  8. Robyn, You are such a wonderful mother and your daughter is so very lucky to have such wonderful, loving parents. I think you know that I work with 3 little ones with DS. I love all three of them so much, they are the sweetest children. The little Miss that sits next to me doesn't refer to me as Mrs. Frank, but just "Frank" which comes out like "Crank". We all laugh in our room - I'm sure that's what she thinks of me most of the time - Cranky, as part of my job is to make sure that she is following directions and we do butt heads occasionally (like every hour!) I often have to turn my head so she doesn't see me smiling. These 3 little ones are such a bright spot in my day.

    I am also bothered by the "R" word. It shows the ignorance of the speaker.


  9. Wonderful post!! Thank you so much for writing it!
    My niece is a wonderful, beautiful soul who just happens to have developmental problems. We have heard the hated "R" word too many times.
    Treat others as you would have them treat you - that is what I teach and try to practice!

  10. The love shines through her, and you.

  11. Beautifully said. Thank you for this post. I always admire your family -- the love shines through with all of your posts.

  12. Evening, touching post, Annie looks so happy, love in her eyes....Blessings Francine.

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  14. Robyn...I stand beside you on this.
    Much of what you wrote is common courtesy, a respect for others.

  15. Robyn,
    Amen to all you have said! I have a sister with Downs Syndrome. She is 56 now and my responsibility. It has been a difficult path at times, but she is a sweet girl. I know that God gave her to us because he knew we would love her and take care of her. Youngsters are not always the inappropriate ones, adults can be also when we are out "in public." God bless your and Annie. She is a beautiful young lady. Anne

  16. Well said !! I was so delighted that 4 of my Grandsons had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of a beautiful family , while camping last summer, who had a young son that just happened to have Down's Syndrome ...They all became fast friends and I got to talk to them a little about how just because someone is different looking or acting than you are, it doesn't mean they are strange or weird...They agreed and only had good things to say about all the fun they had together. and now I hope it will be a great new summertime friend memory as well as making it an experience they will always fall back on in the future when they make the acquaintance of another beautiful person they meet, that might just happen to have Down's Syndrome....

  17. Annie is beautiful!! Her eyes say it all!

  18. Your daughter is beautiful in every way..... I love this post as it is a gentle reminder of how society can be.... Very well said....

  19. You're a great mom! And you have a lovely daughter.

  20. As always, wonderfully, succinctly, and most articulately put my dear friend. You - and your daughter - are two of the most beautiful people I've "e-met" and I couldn't agree with your message more. Through the years, we have known several families who have children that have "something extra" - but, I perhaps gained the most insight from my neighbor and friend whose son was also born with that something extra special. They have brightened - and enlightened - my world.... And, as you know, there are all kinds of "special" challenges that God has blessed some of his children with... You both make my heart sing.... Smiles & Hugs ~ Robin (PS....I am loving your Leo so much....and those wonderful bunnies and sheep from the faire....OH MY...!!)

  21. A great message Robyn, you are a wonderful mother. Annie has such a beautiful smile that radiates so much happiness!

  22. Annie has the prettiest smile and the most wonderful parents. I love seeing her with her faithful companion she carries. Thank you Robyn for this post. I will certainly take it to heart. Hugs, Lori

  23. Robyn ~
    The first time I looked at the post, there was only Annie's picture...hence my first comment.
    Wonderful post! Last year, my dearest friend had a granddaughter born with Down Syndrome. I have not yet met her (they are 4 hours away), but grandma reports that she is doing well.
    Hugs :)

  24. I hate the R word. I have always believed every child is a gift from God. Life is to short to pass someone by and miss the blessing they have to offer us. Your daughter is beautiful. By speaking & educating others you may have the greatest impact for hearts to change. Blessings! Lara

  25. Your daughter is lovely!
    Hugs to you both.

  26. Dearest Robyn,
    Thank for sharing Annie, and for sharing your heart!! I am always so blessed and inspired by your posts!! Beautifully said, my friend!!
    Big Hugs to you and Annie~~

  27. Beautifully said.
    I have tried to teach my children to treat and love others the way they want
    to be treated.
    Annie's face just shines with love.
    You are blessed friend.
    Loved the treasured Easter basket too.
    Woolie Love & JOY

  28. Great post ~ my son, Tad, also has Down Syndrome and in 48 years, I've never heard of the national day either. It's a great thing to bring awareness! It's an interesting path that we walk with our kids ~ sometimes easy and fun ~ sometimes a challenge! Thanks for helping to enlighten the world around us!!