The leading human rights organization for all individuals with Down syndrome.

National Down Syndrome Society
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New York New York 10017
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The Tie That Binds
The Tie That Binds

A couple of months after my son Ethan was born with Down syndrome we received a phone call from a doctor in town who had a child with Down syndrome named Hope. Hopie's mom and dad adopted her with such unconditional love for a beautiful gift from God. We quickly became best friends. Eventually Hopie, her mom Angie, Ethan and I went to get our pictures made by Ginger, who always took our family pictures. We knew that she had a son with Down syndrome. When Ginger pulled back the blanket before the pictures, she said "Oh, how lucky you are." I thought she was nuts! I had just had a child with special needs and I was lucky? Her wise words have come full circle and I am lucky. Ginger's precious Brady joined us for our pictures. The fourth thread of our binding tie is baby Bill. I have known Bill's mom, Sadie, for almost 12 years now. Our daughters are the same age and have always been friends. We attend the same church and Bible class, we are in the same Bunko group and we even ran into their family at Disney World, when we didn't know the other would be there. She was there for me when I had Ethan. Her husband would watch Ethan at the girl's soccer games so I could watch the games. Was God preparing them for a special one? Sadie and Forrest had baby Bill in 2008. They are the perfect parents. When Sadie was ready, one of our friends held a celebration lunch. She invited Angie (Hopie's mom), Ginger (Brady's mom) and me (Ethan's mom). We laughed and cried and told all sorts of funny stories, ate wonderful food, and prayed. It was great to have such wonderful friends and someone who knows our day to day struggles and trials, but also the joy and love and how proud we feel. Sometimes we say it's our club and not everyone can be in it; it's very exclusive. The next summer we had Brady, Hope, Ethan and baby Bill's pictures taken. We had so much fun; as mothers we have such a connection and love watching our kids interact with each other. They all have different personalities. Ethan is bossy and likes to be in control; he would direct how we should all be in each shot. Hopie is dramatic and would want Ethan not to be so bossy. She is also an avid reader. And sweet baby Bill is laid back and so easy going, like his parents. In our pictures you can see how much fun we have together and the love we have for each other. And you can see into the hearts of moms with special children. We all feel so lucky, we value our friendships and all wish that we had more time to spend with each other. We are so blessed by the tie that binds us.

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