Welcome to Illinois

So far, so good

Posted in Personal by Matt at WelcometoIllinois on November 21, 2008

We had an appointment with the consultant on Monday to check up on our little boy’s progress and make sure we were getting and/or aware of all the services that are available to us. She was really pleased with his progress – as are we, and it was really great to get the perspective of someone who sees a lot of babies with Down’s syndrome and has something to compare him to.

Since the day he was born we have been amazed by how little Down’s syndrome appears to have affected him, and he does seem to be very lucky to have a mild case – at least in terms of the physical impact.

He took to feeding immediately and has no problems with his heart or other internal organs and is so strong and solid that it is easy to forget that there is anything “wrong” with him at all. The consultant even used the term “normal” when describing his muscle tone.

It is early days of course but he also appears to have been mildly affected in terms of his physical appearance – he looks just exactly like his older brother did. It doesn’t matter to us what he looks like of course, but the consultant mentioned that it may well make it easier for him to fit in as he grows up.

We are trying not to get carried away with the good news, and the consultant was also quick to point out that the physical effects (or lack of them) have no bearing on the potential effects on his cognitive abilities, although as he sat watching her tell us this, his big eyes transfixed on her, the early signs are good.

I was away in America last week and the change I saw in him when I got back was amazing. He is so much more bright and alert and more of a baby boy than a newborn.

“He’s a genius boy” declared his older brother this morning (I have no idea where he got that from). And to me, he is.

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3 Responses

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  1. Illinois Mom said, on November 22, 2008 at 4:35 am

    Thanks for sharing the great news and for this fabulous website. I’ve gotten such great information and inspiration from it.

    Our daughter made the paper this last week.

    This truly has been a great and unexpected journey for our family, as it sounds like it has for yours.

  2. welcometoillinois said, on November 22, 2008 at 7:35 am

    Good for her – and great for you for encouraging her to fulfill her potential. I think our attitude with our little boy is to assume that he can do anything until it is shown that he can’t – just the same attitude we have for his older brother.

  3. Illinois Mom said, on November 24, 2008 at 6:00 am

    Exactly. Our motto over the last few years has become Down syndrome is not a reason. As in one therapist’s view, “your daughter throws toys when she becomes frustrated because she has DS–you shouldn’t correct her…” I figured I might be wrong and might die trying, but I certainly was not going to let DS be a reason for unacceptable behavior.

    Doctors, especially, in our experience, specialists, would sometimes use the “she has Down’s reason” to explain whatever ailment we were having at the time. If they can’t answer the follow-up question of “what’s DS got to do with it,” we will usually look for another doctor. We have no room for stereotypes, especially from our medical team.

    Our daughter is still young, so we are far from being experts, but, as you said, so far, so good.

    Keep up the great work! Your site and eloquence is a true gift to many.

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