The Cromwell Family Story 

Down Syndrome Awareness Month Entry, submit your story here.

We started on our journey as a family with a child expected to have Down Syndrome at 11-12 weeks, initially by the nuchal fold measurement, then through the genetic screening, and confirmed through the CVS test on the last day, possibly at 13 weeks. It was a whirlwind time, especially with mom having to go through appointments by herself due to COVID-19 restrictions in spring 2020. Even after confirmation, the following weeks and months were rocky at times with processing emotions, gaining different perspectives of our future, and doctors unsure of our daughter’s prognosis due to intrauterine growth restriction (IGR). Thankfully prenatal cardiac tests did not show any major concerns. Despite all of this, we cannot thank our team enough at UC Health OB and MFM physicians and CCHMC Cardiac Team for their support and for ensuring a positive and successful pregnancy. Our little girl, Evelynn, made her grand entrance at 37 weeks showing off as tiny by mighty, ironically delivered by the same doctor who was not certain she would live due to the IGR. Mom and dad were instantly more in love with her once she was put in their arms, she was beautiful and perfect. We were fortunate that she got to stay with mom in the postpartum room and did not have a need to visit or stay in the NICU. Both mom and Evelynn were discharged together a couple of days later. Her big sister was in awe with her from the moment they met, and are two peas in a pod.

Evelynn’s biggest obstacle since birth has been related to her growth and feeding concerns. She did have a NG tube to supplement her feeding for about 5 months. At this time, she eats and drinks similar to same-age kids with added Pediasure to supplement. She did have three small holes in her heart, which, thankfully, 2/3 of them closed on their own by 6 months. Evelynn has also been followed frequently by ENT and the Gastrointestinal team for various things. All in all, she is a healthy and thriving girl.

Evelynn started attending daycare at the same place her big sister attended and with the same teachers in general when she was 13 weeks old. This has been instrumental in her all-around growth having similar age peer models and a team of dedicated teachers to facilitate learning and development in each area. Inclusion matters and makes a difference in her life and all the other children with Down Syndrome or other developmental delays. We are fortunate to have the support of Hickory Dickory Tots in West Chester, OH, for all of their support. These days Evelynn can be found with her same-age or slightly older peers in the toddler wing playing outside, playing with blocks, chatting with each other, dancing, and playing in the kitchen, among other things that are of interest to an almost two-year-old.
Evelynn is almost two, which is hard for mom and dad to believe. In her short two years, she overcame some medical challenges, is walking independently all over the place, has words and signs she uses consistently, plays independently or with others, and understands so much more around her than one might not realize. We look forward to attending more programs with GiGi Playhouse in Loveland, OH (Cincinnati area) that will allow her to grow in different ways and build relationships with other Down Syndrome families in the community.

Kristin, Natha, Isabella, and Evelynn Cromwell

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