In Honor of Down Syndrome Awareness Month

 

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 In honor of Down Syndrome Awareness Month, I am reposting the review of this amazing book.

Down Syndrome is a condition in which the person has an extra chromosome and can cause developmental delays and major medical problems.  Romy Wyllie was 26 years old when she had her son Andrew in 1959 and discovered that he had Down Syndrome.  In those days most women were told that their child had died when in fact they were sent to live in an institution.  This occurred to Romy Wyllie but her husband Pete refused to tell his wife that their son had died.  They chose to bring their son home.

Loving Andrew:  A Fifty-Two-Year Story of Down Syndrome is an incredible book written by his mother Romy Wyllie.  She tells of her son’s challenges and triumphs throughout his life.  She discusses her feelings of raising a child with Down Syndrome and shares how her son was at the forefront of improving the community’s attitude toward one with a disability.

The reader learns how many things have improved since the 1950s for those with a disability.  In the past people with disabilities were seen as a burden on their families. Most professionals gave a bleak outlook for children with Down syndrome.    Romy Wyllie and her husband tried to give their son Andrew as many opportunities as their other two children and incredibly he prospered and grew past everyone’s expectations.

The book was very emotional for me at times.  I found myself in tears when I read that Andrew had accomplished things that his parents were told he never would and I found myself in tears when he had to go through very difficult medical issues.  I would highly recommend Loving Andrew:  A Fifty-Two-Year Story of Down Syndrome for anyone that would like more information about Down Syndrome and how one family would not let their son’s disability define him.

For more information about Down syndrome, please visit the National Down Syndrome Society at http://www.ndss.org/.

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