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The Birthday Queen
Jessica and I celebrating her birthday
Jessica and I celebrating her birthday
The Birthday Queen

I have an older sister, Jessica, who was born with Down syndrome. She has many things she loves including; her family, her friends, pompoms, coloring books, playing cards, movies, diet coke, hot Cheetos, sunglasses, nail polish, and most importantly, birthdays. Of course her favorite birthday to celebrate is her own. While most birthdays are celebrated the day of, our family celebrates Jessica’s birthday for the entire month. Festivities consist of movies, dinner outings, manicures/pedicures, and sometimes mini vacations. When asked where she would like to go for her birthday, she often replies “Vegas.” What can we say; she enjoys the bright lights, the shows, the restaurants, and the Elvis impersonators. Her preferred birthday restaurant is something that serves spaghetti and meatballs. And as a family member, you know you have done right by Jessica when she allows you to eat spaghetti on your birthday as well. Jessica is full of these little acts that would not mean anything to other families, but to ours they mean the world. When Jessica allows you to spend your birthday at an Italian restaurant, you accept, because there is no higher honor than eating spaghetti and meatballs on your birthday. She has an uncanny memory for people and their birthdays and looks forward to the celebrations that each month has to offer. We have started a monthly tradition of flipping the calendar to the next month, which brings more excitement to Jess than anyone could ever imagine. She has an unparalleled love for life, which is contagious. She has enriched the lives of every member of my family, and everyone who has had the opportunity to know her. She is the Queen of Birthdays, and while a month long celebration may seem a bit excessive, it’s our way of thanking her for brightening our world. The world is a better place with people like Jessica in it. She is a beautiful person inside and out, and I look forward to spending many more birthdays with my sister, “The Birthday Queen.”

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Perla Menchavez, United States, CA
10/3/2013 12:28:16 AM
We met the Puckett family while on vacation in Mexico. It was July and Jessica was full of joy as she was celebrating her birthday month at Club Med! It was a special treat years later to see Jessie on the evening news running with the Special Olympics torch in LA!! Such a beautiful tribute for Kylie's big sister!

Christine Cottrell, United States, IL
10/2/2013 11:06:30 AM
Beautiful story!

Peggy Herrera, United States, CA
10/1/2013 9:47:16 PM
This story is so touching and reflects the love of a wonderful family! I have had the pleasure of sharing some special moments with this family and Jessica, the "Birthday Queen" has always been part of the celebrations in her own special way. This story truly expresses a family's love for Jessica, the "Birthday Queen" and the joy and admiration they share for one another.

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