Scott – A Father’s Story

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scottMore than ten years have gone by since my son was born. He came into our lives loved and wanted from the very start. In fact, this is true of all my children. I love my children unconditionally. Which doesn’t mean I like all the decisions they make, but right or wrong, I’ll stand by them. There was no instruction book with these children, no map to follow. The course of action was to give our children every opportunity that we could to succeed in their lives. This success is measured only by the individual and who is to say what success may be to another perhaps it is when one excels beyond his or her own expectations.

Scott was our fourth child. Most of this letter pertains to him. But it’s important that it be known that Scott is part of a whole family and what affects him has affected all of us.

When Scott was born, the doctor came to us with concern on his face. He began by telling us that Scott had two fingers that had grown together. I looked up at him and asked what else was wrong. Somehow, down inside my heart, I already knew the answer. Then the doctor told us that he suspected Down Syndrome. It only confirmed what I already knew. My wife and I cried I guess from the long hours of being up some for ourselves, and a lot for Scott because we didn’t really know what we could do for Scott. Most of the doctors have very few ideas, and the ones they have are mostly negative, at least to us.

Of all our children, Scott was the only one that I was able to be there for. My wife had all four of our children by Caesarian Section due to complications. It was not until Scott was born that they would let fathers in to see this kind of birth. And then even at that, they brought me in just in time to see Scott brought into the world. As I saw this child, my heart went out to him, and a bond was begun. It didn’t matter to me in what condition he came to us. I would do all I could to help Scott and my family succeed.

When Scott was born, we were at first at a loss as to what we could do to help him. But when the concern began to wear off, we realized we had been given the answer even before Scott was born. We had been told about an organization which had a therapy program for challenged children. We had hoped this program would be of benefit to our daughter who was having some learning problems. My mother-in-law had told my wife about how she had help with their therapy on a child who had been in a drowning accident and had sustained brain damage because of it.

We decided to get Scott involved in this therapy as soon as possible so we set up an appointment. Because of a blood thickening problem, Scott was sent from Cedar City, Utah, to Primary Children’s Medical Center, in Salt Lake City, Utah. We were in Salt Lake City for about 5 days, where they were able to treat his condition successfully. They were also able to confirm that he had Down Syndrome. About 2 weeks after Scott was born, we went to our first appointment with NACD and we began his program of therapy. So as you can see, Scott got off to a very early start.

When you consider the cost of helping Scott, you understand that at times I became very skeptical of the therapy and was concerned of its real worth. But having no other alternatives, we continued with the program. Now ten years later, I can, without hesitation, fully recommend to you and anyone with needy children, this organization, The National Association for Child Development (NACD).

As Scott has grown and we have enhanced the therapy, I’ve watched Scott’s development.

When Scott was born, there were other Down’s children born nearly at the same time, in our area. Therefore, I was able to compare Scott’s development to theirs. It’s amazing to see the difference. Where Scott has had this intense therapy, he has excelled far above all of the others. We had given the program information to these others but they were unwilling or unable to use it. Scott is in the upper third of his class and has been since Kindergarten. His spelling has been almost 100% since he began spelling. He can read an understand what he reads. He is very able to reason out problems in his mind. He averages A’s and B’s in all academics. He especially likes science. Scott is in good physical condition. He does not have many of the mannerisms that Down’s children seem to have. His speech is not as good as it could be. But this is due to an abnormal amount of ear infections which impaired Scott’s hearing. Even with this draw-back, Scott has still excelled by virtue of the program. Virtually every time Bob Doman instructed us to use certain therapy and told us Scott would improve he did.

The National Association for Child Development treats every child individually and helps to create programming for their individual needs. Bob Doman has a great insight through his experience to see the needs of the child. He is expending his life to teach this. He has a real concern for the children. The program works. It fills all needs of the child mental, physical, and in some ways spiritual after all, anything that proves to be good is of God.

And, now, as a father, I can help my son. The most important things any parent can do is to be able to help their children. To a father, this is vital, an in- born need to provide and care for his family. Thanks to NACD I can.

Reprinted by permission of The NACD Foundation, Volume 10 No. 14, 1996 ©NACD