Blog Hop: The Truth About Down Syndrome Awareness Walks

walk2013Fellow-blogger Meriah at her blog “With A little Moxie” is holding another “Blog Hop” asking for one truth, one tip, and one photo. I will hopefully not too shamelessly promote my daughter’s Walk team with this entry. 

One Truth: We are in “Walk season” as those active in their local Down syndrome organizations refer to it. Around the country, local parent groups are holding their annual charitable walk. For many, this is their largest fundraising event of the year. For most, it’s what provided the first boost of income that allowed them to grow beyond the kitchen table. Here’s the one truth for new and expectant parents about Walk season:

Down syndrome awareness walks can be overwhelming.

For many attending a walk, it will be their first time ever being in a crowd where there are dozens of individuals with Down syndrome of all ages: from newborns, to toddlers, to school-age, to adults. The sense of being overwhelmed comes in multiple waves:

  • Overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from your friends and family (particularly at your very first Walk for your loved one with Down syndrome);
  • Overwhelmed at trying to spend time with everyone you want to see at the Walk and thank for coming out to support your team and your parent organization; and,
  • Overwhelmed at getting a picture of what life may be like for your child as they grow up.

For parents, the sense of overwhelming hardly subsides for the first two, as it’s always humbling when dozens of people–some of which you’ve only connected with on Facebook or other tangential “friendships”–pledge amounts that total into the hundreds and even thousands of dollars. But, the last instance of being overwhelmed definitely subsides, as your child ages, as you are involved in your organization, and as you get to know people with Down syndrome of all ages.

One Tip: Attend your local Down syndrome community walk, even if you don’t have a team to walk with. The whole point of the Walks are to raise awareness (and from Board member and staff perspectives, to raise funds, as well). By attending, you will be broadening your life experiences by interacting with members of the human family that you may not have had the opportunity to do so with before, or perhaps even avoided. I have yet to meet someone who attended a Down syndrome Awareness Walk who felt like they wasted their morning coming out to an event and experiencing being in a crowd with many people with Down syndrome.

One photo: see above. This is our Walk team from last year, which fittingly ended up numbering 21 total members who walked with us.

Update: The link above has been updated for this year’s walk team for Juliet, which can also be accessed here if you are interested in supporting Krewe de Juliet’s 12th year of supporting Down Syndrome of Louisville.

What’s your walk experience? 

Trackbacks

  1. […] news that provided a true Hollywood ending to the Walk, but the mother she features displays how overwhelming Down syndrome walks can be. […]

  2. […] week, as part of a blog hop, I posted “The Truth about Down Syndrome Walks.” In that post, the truth shared was that Down syndrome walks can be overwhelming. And, they […]

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