We talk a lot about Down syndrome in our house. My youngest child Greta, now 5, was diagnosed with mosaic Down syndrome just before her second birthday. My partner and I have fielded many questions from her older brothers Jasper, 10, and Rory, 8. Early on, when we were learning key word sign to help Greta communicate, they asked, “Will she be able to talk?” I explained that her vocabulary would likely grow and that if it didn’t, we would find other ways to make sure she could let us know what she wanted and how she felt.
Now Greta is doing the asking. At bedtime a few weeks ago came the question, “What does Down syndrome mean?”
“It means you have an extra ingredient,” I replied. “Not many other people have that ingredient. It means you’re amazing.” She proudly shimmied her shoulders and snuggled into bed.