Happy Mom Talk Tuesday! “Mom talk” is when local Twin Cities Playhouse Moms share real stories of Down syndrome, acceptance and GiGi’s Playhouse. This week we are fortunate enough to have Marya (Charlotte’s Mom) share her thoughts on GiGi’s Playhouse and building community after a Down syndrome diagnosis. Thanks for your words, Marya!
“Charlotte means the world to us and a big part of our world is GiGi’s Playhouse. It is an amazing resource that has been with us every step of the way on our journey with Down syndrome. From playgroups to sign language groups, music groups to social skills groups, theater groups to tutoring … the list goes on and on for the amazing ways GiGi’s supports our kiddos and families. We’ve been so fortunate not just to meet other families in the community, but to develop and foster deep connections and meaningful friendships that are all centered around GiGi’s Playhouse. From parties to Young Athletes sessions – there is more available to our family at GiGi’s than we could ever possibly imagine. It truly is inspiring and humbling the opportunities afforded to her through this center.
I don’t really talk about this much, frankly I try and focus on everything we celebrate about Charlotte, helping to dispel myths and create exposure to the amazing community of individuals she represents. Parenting a child with special needs can be really hard sometimes (heck, parenting full stop is hard). There’s the stress of medical appointments, medical interventions, therapy appointments, therapy homework, IEP meetings, and mountains of MA paperwork. But that’s only part of it, that’s the part everyone sees. You see, parenting a child with special needs can also be incredibly isolating. Oftentimes after having a conversation with a parent of a typically developing child, it can feel like nobody could ever understand what you’re going through. Sometimes you avoid these conversations, because they can be a landmine of emotions.
I bring this up not for a pity party, I love my children dearly and love the Ds community. I feel changed for the better by raising Charlotte and being a part of this community. But a big reason for that, is because I’ve had the opportunity to connect with other moms and dads in the community. That connection, those friendships, began at GiGi’s. They continue to grow through GiGi’s. Every event we attend there is an opportunity to connect with other parents. To laugh together, cry together, support each other, guide each other, and just be real. I never would have realized how important that was, and how much I needed it, without the connections I made at GiGi’s Playhouse.
GiGi’s Playhouse is a Down Syndrome Achievement Center, but it’s so much more for all of us lucky enough to walk through its doors.”
Thank you Marya! We are so glad you are here!
Are you a Twin Cities area Playhouse Mom (or Dad!) who would like to share your thoughts on Down syndrome, acceptance and GiGi’s Playhouse in our Blog? Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information!