In this episode, we discuss raising a child with Down’s Syndrome into adulthood. Guest Yvonne Pierre’s youngest son, Zyon, was diagnosed with Down’s Syndrome shortly after he was born. He initially had digestive issues and the nurses went to evaluate him and suspected he had Downs Syndrome. This was confirmed later that day. Yvonne was initially devastated by the news, as she didn’t know anything about the condition. More than anything, she was wondering if her child was going to be ok. She is an open book, so she was open with her family and friends about her son’s condition. She also relied heavily on her faith and her love of her child. Everyone she told reacted in a different way. Some researched the conditions, some asked questions, and some reacted negatively.
She has found life with her son a blessing. She looks at everything as life lessons, such as how is she supposed to grow from this. Zyon was born 5 weeks early and has a mild heart murmur, which seems to have resolved. Speech has been Zyon’s biggest challenge, although he still struggles with digestive and skin issues. Zyon has a high tolerance for pain, so Yvonne needs to be really aware in order to pick up his cues to see if he is in pain.
His school experience has been varied and was dependent on the quality of the teachers. Due to teacher issues, Yvonne homeschooled Zyon for a year. Currently, Zyon has been transitioning to adulthood. He is wanting his privacy, starting to care what people think, and is starting to like girls. It has been challenging for Yvonne to know how to discuss dating and sex with her son. She has also been struggling to figure out how to discuss driving with him. She continues to work with her son on safety in the community. They are working on finding Zyon a job that maximizes his talents.
Yvonne has experienced some isolation throughout parenthood, but she has made sure everyone in her family is included in the community, which has helped. For self-care, she meditates, eats well, exercises together as a family, and prays as a family. She also works on having a positive outlook, even when things get hard. She recommends networking with other parents in your community and getting involved.
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Intro Outro: Intro Outro 2 by Mattias Lahoud under CC-BY 3.0 License (www.freesound.org)
Theme Song: 90s rock style by monkeyman535 under CC-BY 3.0 License (www.freesound.org)
Self Care Song: Green and Orange No Water by Duncan Alex under CC-BY 3.0 License (www.freesound.org)
Hosted by: Jessica Temple and Lewis Temple
Disclaimer: Our show is not designed to provide listeners with specific or personal legal, medical, or professional services or advice. Parents of children with health issues should always consult their health care provider for medical advice, medication, or treatment.
Copyright 2020 Jessica and Lewis Temple