I’ve said before that I do not look too far into the future where Frankie is concerned. Try not to might be a more accurate way to put it. I don’t usually go hunting for the stories of adults with Down syndrome doing amazing things, but sometimes they just fall into my lap (thank you social media!) and I feel compelled to share and shout about them.
The original video that I saw was a few years old, but it showed a well spoken young woman named Bryann Burgess. She was then a student at University of South Carolina’s LIFE program and a certified Kindermusik teacher. I was so impressed, I googled some more and found she has since graduated from USC and is a wonderful piano and guitar player. She is just all around awesome.
Do I think Frankie is going to be a musician? Probably not…we’re not particularly musical in this house… But I kind of feel like, with a typical child, you start off with a whole realm of possibilities of what your kid can grow up to be and you cross things off as you go along and your child’s talents and interests develop. With a child with Down syndrome, I’ve found it to be the opposite. Many of us parents didn’t know all that much when we first got that diagnosis, so we started off from a place where stereotypes dictate what we believe; stereotypes which include a lot of can’ts and nevers.
Now, as I come across young adults soaring at all sorts of careers, I kind of collect their stories and file them away as “possible” and “maybe.” As she grows and as we learn, that file is expanding all the time! The future is bright!