This week on the podcast I am joined by Linzi who is mummy to Matilda, or ‘Mighty Matilda’ as she is known by on Instagram. Matilda is almost 2 years old and she has Down syndrome.
Both Linzi and Matilda do so much to support Down syndrome awareness, both online and offline. Down syndrome, or Trisomy 21 as it is often referred to, is a condition in which a child is born with an extra copy of their 21st chromosome. Down syndrome usually causes varying degrees of intellectual and physical disability and associated medical issues.
Linzi was one of the first mamas to share her breastfeeding story on boobingit.com and I know her story resonated with so many. Since it will soon be World Down Syndrome Day on Sunday 21 March I wanted to invite Linzi on to talk more about her and Matilda’s amazing journey so far.
Pregnancy, giving birth and learning to breastfeed a baby with Down syndrome
Mama of three Linzi opens up about how she and her partner felt when they first were given a Down syndrome diagnosis during her pregnancy. She describes how they found the strength to cope and stay positive. Linzi also tells us about giving birth to Matilda and the shock heart condition diagnosis which came eight days later. We also hear of Linzi’s experience of breastfeeding for the first time, including her dedication to pumping milk in the early days and her fear her baby would never be able to latch on to the breast.
“It’s a regret of mine that I never breastfed my first two children and so I really wanted to experience it with Matilda, and it was something I insisted on throughout my pregnancy.”Linzi
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World Down Syndrome Day
Linzi and Matilda, along with the rest of the Down syndrome community across the world, will be celebrating World Down Syndrome Day on Sunday 21 March 2021. The date for WDSD being the 21st day of the 3rd month, was selected to signify the uniqueness of the triplication (trisomy) of the 21st chromosome which causes Down syndrome. It’s a day dedicated to advocating for the rights, inclusion and well-being of people with Down syndrome. Part of the campaign is #LotsofSocks whereby you wear brightly coloured or mismatched socks and post your pictures online to help support Down syndrome awareness.
Key talking points
- Receiving a Down syndrome diagnosis during pregnancy
- How Matilda’s heart condition was discovered and why she needed surgery
- The difficult start with breastfeeding due to Matilda’s low muscle tone
- Why it’s important to recognise that everyone with Down syndrome is special and unique
- How the family are learning Makaton to better communicate with Matilda
- About World Down Syndrome Day and the importance of community support
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