Two weeks ago, I got in my car to attend the meet-up organized by the International Down Syndrome Coalition (IDSC). I wore my "Love Doesn't Count Chromosomes" t-shirt, and so did every member of my family.
My 7-year-old asked, "Why does it say that?" I listened close as my oldest -- only 8 years old -- responded. "Some people think it's bad to have Down syndrome, but it's not. Having someone with Down syndrome in your family means that you have so much love, and we are so lucky to have this love."
I smiled. How strange to think I was initially sad when my daughter was born with Down syndrome!
How incredible that we were traveling to meet with other people who loved someone with Down syndrome. The gathering was purposed to celebrate their lives and to kick off World Down Syndrome Day. Indeed, we live with so much love.
At the gathering, one of the highlights was the preview of our World Down Syndrome Day video. Each year, the IDSC produces a video with the intent to share the beauty of our lives. It has become one of the highlights of our organization.
When the founder of the IDSC, Diane Grover, first heard Sister Hazel's song, "This Kind of Love," she fell in love with the message and how closely it reflected how she felt towards her daughter, who was born with Down syndrome.
It is no surprise this was the song selected for the 2014 video. Thank you, Sister Hazel, for allowing us to use your song to show the world that all life is precious!
Like the introduction of the video says, "At the IDSC we smile every single day from the photos that come our way. Photos that show beauty, devotion, free spirits. For our families, there truly is nothing more beautiful than this kind of love."
And like the song says, this kind of love is what many of us dreamed about, it fills us up, it leaves no doubt. And this kind of love is why we are standing here. We cannot get enough of this kind of love!
By Ellen Stumbo, IDSC Communications