To the editor:
This year, for the first time ever, the United Nations has recognized March 21 — 3/21, for three copies of the 21st chromosome — as World Down syndrome Day. My husband and I first heard of it last month, when we attended a national event to raise funds for Down syndrome issues: scholarships (yes, for college), continued awareness for communities to accept and for schools to fully include, and for important pending legislation and medical research — all for individuals with Down syndrome.
Beautiful and articulate young adults with Down syndrome announced this upcoming “World Day.” Later, representatives from the national organization reminded us of the importance of this being a “World Day” by reminding us of the inadequate and inhumane ways many countries treat their citizens with Down syndrome.
Living in Skaneateles with our daughter Kate, who has Down syndrome, has allowed us to relish in every opportunity she has had. We are grateful every day for her smile as we lace up her skates (Skaneateles Figure Skating Club), when we pick her up from summer day camp (Skaneateles Country Club), or when she lines up to receive communion (St. James Episcopal Church).
We have total confidence in her quality, inclusive schooling (Waterman Elementary School) and we deeply appreciate being witness to the friendships Kate has with her peers. What they are able to give each other is a beautiful thing!
It hasn’t always been easy. It won’t always be. But for now, 3/21, World Down syndrome Day, seems like a perfect day to feel the “triple time love” Kate gives us — and to recognize and thank all of you in this village, for all you do for her.