NACD Kids: “Renee”

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by Elisa Delfino

reneeHow do I even begin? There was a time that I didn’t understand the new perfect angel that the Lord sent to me. I thought, “What do I do? Cry? Cuddle her and wish it wasn’t so?” As a mother I thought, “What can I do to fix the situation?” This time I needed help. I had a new route to go, a very special one.

First, let me share with you a little history. My beautiful daughter, Renee is my fourth daughter born 9/21/01. I was brought to the nursery to be told my sweet girl may be deaf, not speak, have a hole in her heart, have a very limited life and eventually end up in a group home and die at a very early age. Let’s not forget her mental capacity will be very low and she will be short.

Well I looked back at those very grim doctors and thought how sad they were to think like that. Next I just shook my head and said “not my girl.” Quickly my husband, Stephen began to research the label “down syndrome.” We learned what beautiful children downs babies grow up to be. Sometimes we just need a little more help. We took our little princess to see Ellen Doman at NACD. She took one look at Renee and said, “You have a star. Through dedication and program you as the parent can learn to have an even more independent, smart little girl.”

I started right away. Flashing cards, bright lights, no lights — anything it took to wake up Renee’s brain even more. Whatever the exercise was, I did it. The NACD has given me the confidence that I, an ordinary mother can overcome the impossible. I have never given up, and I thank Lyn Waldeck (another NACD evaluator) for having so much faith in me.

I saw a perfect little girl hiding inside and the NACD family has helped me bring her out. You can do it, just believe. Thank you for giving me the strength and guidance I needed. Renee is amazing.

She is a vital, loving part of our family. She has a great personality and is so communicative. She has a sense of humor and is creating her own stories. She’s even learning some Spanish.

The NACD has shown me how we can enlighten and awaken the brain. We have the power to work it out and smooth it out. I am forever grateful.

I stood alone until I held her hand. The magic and love from her crushed my heart. I never knew such beauty and unconditional love until she showed it to me. When I ask Renee “who is your best buddy?” She says “you!” Then I ask her “who is my best buddy?” She says “me!”

She is forever my heart.

Reprinted by permission of The NACD Foundation, Volume 21 No. 14, 2008 ©NACD