Blank Blog Blindness: Downs Side Up's First Blog Post

As it turns out, there is nothing quite as daunting as a totally blank blog...

Forget that 'where to start' feeling as you begin an essay in a new exercise book.  

Forget letters you have written, thinking your life depended on their outcome.

Forget those exams you wrote under pressure, in airless halls, monitored by stern-faced dragons with shoes that distracted and annoyed as they clacked up and down between the rows...  

No, this is a feeling of wanting to get something much more important, very right from the onset.  Of wanting to create something that will lift spirits, give support, bring people together, raise a smile and encourage. Yet all the while providing practical tips and real solutions for the everyday lives of parents and educators who have a child with Down's syndrome in their lives. 

I know that some of the fiercest critics will be out there, 'in the ether', critics far scarier than the French teacher at my secondary school, who delighted in making you cry for mis-conjugating your verbs. 

So to any and all readers, I say that my words and opinions are my own, they come from the heart, which is on my sleeve.  And you can't say fairer than that.

Despite the immortal words of Mary Poppins ringing in my ears every time I pondered how to banish the blankness, ("Let's start from the very beginning. It's a very good place to start."), I am going to commence with an excerpt of a letter I wrote for our girls at the beginning of this school year. Perhaps we'll start at the very beginning next time...

"Mummy and Daddy are so proud of you both for so many different reasons...
M, you were born beautiful, dark and strong, with a wise, knowing face that looked as if you 'had been here before'.  You instinctively and impulsively knew what you wanted out of life, and let everyone around you know. Believe me you will get there, wherever THERE is.  As one teacher said "She'll probably get a First at university without even trying."  7 years on, you are not only clever, musical, artistic and bloomin' feisty, but the most caring, thoughtful and funny friend and family member anyone could wish for.  

N, you have overcome obstacles that few can comprehend.  You fought for your life in those first few weeks in intensive care. You learnt to breast-feed after 3 months, against all odds.  You survived heart surgery.  You have learnt to walk and talk and smile and sing and paint and cook and swim and ride horses and make friends.  Most of all you have changed opinions and melted old stereotypes wherever you go.  Today you confidently strode into mainstream school for the first time, making a mockery of the consultant who told us on the day you were born, "Some of 'them' even go to school these days, you know."  This is the beginning of a new and long journey, but it is an exciting one."


  1. Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to look at my infant blog and even share it amongst their friends...

  2. This is beautiful. I will be following as a supporter of your strength and an admirer of your enormous heart. Oh yes, to learn anything possible about parenting ANY child from a darn good mom. Excuse me--"mum".

  3. So very much love to you all xxxxxx


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