Published on May 21, 2014, by in Down Syndrome.

Spoiler alert… YES!!!

Brenda K. Gorman, PH.D and John Consalvi, CEO of Lingua Health and Grupo Lingua, M.A. CCC-SLP, discuss the research supporting bilingualism for special needs children as well the importance of maintaining a family’s native language and goals for bilingualism. For more bilingual slp resources, please visit


It was July 2013, mid to late July, we were getting packed to head out to Freeport to a beautiful beach house for the weekend. It was going to be our first ‘vacation’ in years, and our first getaway with Izzy. The Monday before we were set to head out, I got this nagging feeling that perhaps it was time for me to POAS. I have always been very regular, even after having Izzy, and here I was maybe one or two days late. I had my husband stop by the store and pick me up some pregnancy tests. Even before I took the test, I knew. Five minutes later, I had the confirmation. I was pregnant.

Now most people would be ecstatic to get a positive pregnancy test. They might start screaming, crying, leaping for joy. Hug and kiss their spouse or significant other, start telling the world, even. That my friends, was not my reaction. Not even close. I just sat there. I stared at the test, I told my husband, and I just sat there. I did not feel excitement. I did not feel joy. I did not feel butterflies in my stomach. I felt nothing. No. Wait. That is a lie. I did feel something. I felt disappointment that I wasn’t going to be able to enjoy a beer or two while at the beach.

We opted to have genetic testing done this time around. I opted to have it done. I figured not knowing would drive me crazy. Thankfully, the testing came back looking great and we found out we were having a little girl.

Again, you would have thought that feelings of joy, excitement, happiness, would all come. I thought they would, but they didn’t. I was relieved, and life continued.  We were now approaching October, and Izzy’s first birthday. We were beyond busy.


This is our very first time participating in the Houston Buddy Walk with Izzy ( Saturday, November 9, 2013 ), and we are excited to share this day with all our friends and family. We will be looking for volunteers and photographers, so contact me if you or someone you know is interested.

The Buddy Walk was established in 1995 by the National Down Syndrome Society to celebrate Down Syndrome Awareness Month in October and to promote acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome.

Join our Buddy Walk Team:
Izzy’s Merry Monsters

This event is FREE and has something for everyone!

Saturday, November 9
Diamond Lot at Minute Maid Park
(Downtown Houston)

10 am – 2 pm

Last year I was blessed with the opportunity to get a preview of the Buddy Walk and take pictures at the event.

Can’t see images above? Try this link.

Published on June 12, 2013, by in izzy, mami.

This morning, we packed up Izzy, my parents and mother in law, and we all headed out to Izzy’s school, where she will be starting in August. We did this to give the grandparents a better understanding of the school and why we’ve decided to have Izzy go there. While at the school, we were able to see the classrooms, ranging for infant classrooms, to 5 year old classrooms, in action. We saw kiddos on the playground, at music therapy, sensory stations, father days activities, having snacks…we got to see many beautiful children, being children. Happy children.

Published on June 11, 2013, by in izzy, mami.

ECI-early childhood intervention, has been a big help. We have two therapist who come out twice month to work with Izzy. They are great. They connect with not only Izzy, but with me. I am grateful.

However, there are times, like today, where I can’t help but feel overwhelmed. Yes, Izzy is doing great. She’s rolling, sitting on her own, likes to stand, wants to crawl, has taken to solids, she’s energetic,  she’s teething, she’s cooing and “talking”. Basically she’s on track. Which is wonderful. But there’s a but. I hate that there’s a but.  At least in my head. BUT, is it enough? I pray it is.

More than anything in this world I want my daughter to be successful. I want her to have every  opportunity out there. So I ask myself, are we ding enough? Yes, we are hands on, but could we be doing more? Frankly, I often forget she has DS, until it’s time for therapy. Am I doing her a disservice by “forgetting”?  I hope not.

I have high expectations for Izzy. Even before she was born and we were told all this, I had, and still do have, high expectations for her. DS isn’t who she is. It’s what she has. It makes things challenging. It requires us to be positive. It requires us to go that extra step. It requires us to leave our comfort zone behind. We read to her. We sing. We play. We talk all time. We hold her. We let her problem solve. We pray. We ask questions. Lots of them. Are we doing everything we can to assure our daughter is successful.  I pray so.

What I know is that with God’s grace and guidance, we will do everything we can to assure that our Izzy is successful.


Today our Izzy is eight months old.

I can’t help but think back to eight months ago.

Seeing our Izzy today, you wouldn’t have guessed she was was ever in the hospital. She’s 18lbs 8oz, has two teeth, Nuisance and Pest, breaking in. She’s sitting by herself, rocks on her hand and knees/feet, she’s making all sorts of sounds, eating yummy food and countless other things which frankly I wasn’t sure she’d be able to do due to DS.

You can’t tel me there isn’t a God. You can’t tell me miracles don’t exist.

Now if she’d only say, “ma”

My Izzy is eight months old.

God is good.


I love videos like this. They are simple, to the point, and allow people with Down Syndrome to speak for themselves.

“The abilities of an individual with Down Syndrome are directly in relation to what we expect from them.”

We’re More Alike Than Different – The Documentary

Mami and Papi have very high expectations for Izzy… Very High. But she should have even higher expectations for her parents getting her in a position to succeed. And WE are up for the challenge.

There is no map to where we are going, but with God and our family by our side we will never reach a dead end.



We found this Crowdfunding website and thought we would give it a try…

We were/are a little torn about it. I mean, to some it might sound like we are asking for hand outs, but others have embraced it and donated out of the kindness of their hearts. The way I see it… we are raising money that goes directly into Izzy’s new School and special education. IMO not much different than raising money via a walk or other fundraiser.

Here is the video we created to support the campaign

Our campaign is to raise funds for Izzy’s school.
You can make the simplest donation too by sharing – SHARE to your Social and Personal Networks!
Just Like and Share our campaign on Facebook, Twitter, or email your friends and family.

Published on May 1, 2013, by in izzy, m&m&i, mami, papi.

I’ve realized that with all that took place on Izzy’s birth and the weeks following,  I never shared my birth story.

Late September 2012, we were told our daughter would require open heart surgery within minutes or hours of her birth. With this news, our birth plan completely changed. I was no longer to deliver at The Women’s Hospital, my OB wasn’t going to deliver my child, all we had planned was thrown out the window. We were now delivering at the Pavilion at TCH. Some new guy, I wasn’t all that comfortable with was going to deliver my child, instead of going into labor naturally, I was to be induced, and instead of holding and loving my newborn, she was to be taken away across the street to be cared for.

We went to the hospital Thursday, October 4th, to be induced. Needless to say, I didn’t sleep a wink that night. Yes, I had discomfort. Yes, I had pain. I spent the night watching reruns of the Golden Girls. I’m not sure when, but sometime the morning of the 5th, I finally gave in and said yes to getting an epidural. Later that morning, perhaps around noon-ish, I was told it was time to get ready. The resident and a couple nurses came in, and ‘got me ready’, they had me practice pushing. I’ll be honest and say this is when I really started to get scared. I remember having what I can only describe as a panic attack. It hit me then, that as soon as I gave birth, as soon as I stopped practicing and pushed for real, that my child would enter this world and have to endure God knows what. I remember becoming angry and annoyed at the stupid nurses who not only wanted me to push, breathe, but also expected me to count. How the hell was I suppose to do all that?

My husband was a God send. I do not know how he managed, but he got me through it.

At 2:07PM on Friday, October 5th, Izzy was born. I remember hearing her cry. And cry. And cry. I wasn’t allowed to hold her. There were a whole bunch Neonatologists in the room, they took her and worked on her. I remember hearing her cry and cry. Finally, after it seem like hours, they did bring her to me. I got to hold my Izzy, briefly  before they once again took her to the West Tower. Her papi went with her. I stayed.

The next time I got to see my Izzy, was later that same evening, maybe around 7PM? I was wheeled to the West Tower, to the 17th floor, where the CVICU was located. There I saw my sweet, beautiful baby girl. I wasn’t allowed to hold her, all I could do was stare at her, and stroke her leg, her arm, her check. To plant kisses on her little toes.

I was then wheeled back to my room. I didn’t sleep that night. I looked at pictures my husband had taken. I prayed. I prayed hard. Frankly, I don’t think I’ve stopped praying. Oh, and I watched the Golden Girls.

Two things which got me through those first 24 hours….my husband and the Golden Girls.