Sabrina’s Letter to New Parents

Hello to You!

Allow me to introduce myself during this interesting time in your life and to congratulate you on being a parent to another Miracle in the world! My name is Sabrina, although my nickname is “Beans.” My 2 older sisters and their friends were just joking around when I was a baby and the name “Beans” stuck, much to my dismay as I am now 15 years old and am still called “Beans.” “My life started out in a bubbly delivery room with my dad at my mom’s side having a planned C-Section, but when the doctor delivered me the whole room of doctors and nurses went silent, except for me, I started crying. My mom, a worrywart registered nurse, immediately went on high-alert because of the silence and the doctor leaned over and asked her if I had had any previous genetic testing that she forgot about. My mom denied any testing. The doctor said that I looked like I had Down syndrome yet I was awake and crying with some supplemental oxygen. My dad asked that I be brought over so that he and my mom could see me. My dad said that I looked “fine” and my mom said that I “ looked just like my older sister Juney.” I was probably thinking, “Where are the chicken fingers and french fries?” That’s a long way from the breast milk that I was so generously provided by my mom even though the nurse holding me told my mom that I would probably not be able to breast feed because my suck reflex would be weak. Wrong. I had no issues with breast feeding or bottle feeding but I Was born with several cardiac defects that all resolved within 6 months except my bicuspid aortic valve that may need to be replaced when I am old enough to be a Grandma.

My parents, from that moment on, decided that they were going to provide me with love, encouragement and a support system needed to have a successful life filled with accomplishments, just like my 3 older sisters. No brothers for me, just 2 canine siblings. A young German Shepard and and an old Rottweiler among my 4 cats, lots of chickens, ducks, a rabbit and a fish. I have been very busy these past 18 years. Being that my parents enrolled my in every class that the YMCA had to offer, I had a plethora of experiences like cooking, reading, writing, social time and the occasional “Houdini” move of disappearing and having people look for me. I was a common Flight Risk so my parents quickly taught me to safely navigate my surroundings when we where anywhere new and of course I then learned where all the potties where located…..especially the one in Target which was always at the front of the store when we where always in the back of the store. In retrospect, I was only helping my parents get their steps in:) Private Montessori school for preschool was next which required the YMCA teachers to be interviewed, me observed in class at the YMCA and a long conversation with my mom and the Montessori director. My parents had their hearts and minds set on me attending a non-special needs preschool because they thought this would be the best example for me on how to behave like my typical peers. My parents wanted to give me a leg up when in school with my typical peers so they started me in kindergarten a year later than most of the other kids. Inclusionary education was on my parents agenda so they were giving me every possible advantage that they could think of for me to be able to be academically and socially successful. I was in dance classes, karate, swimming, dog training, Kumon, and had lots of parties to help prepare me for my schooling. So much to learn in a short period of time. I learned my numbers and letters buying snacks from vending machines, learned about money buying my own orange slushes and learned how to communicate with strangers by having my parents stand quietly by my side when people asked me questions. My parents were very busy teaching me what I needed to know to grow into who I am now. I am excited to begin college at The Ohio State University in the TOPS Program, but I will think about that after I get back from my spring break trip seeing Harry Potter play in Toronto. My future seems bright. Being an actress and moving to Hollywood is my dream! For now, I enjoy listening to music, performing on stage, working at Chick-fil-A and traveling internationally. Being independent in the OSU College program, working a part time job, and expanding my social circle of peers are my short term goals. Because of my hard work and dedication, along with my family and school support, I know that there are no limits to what I can accomplish. You and your family can be the same way:) I wish you all the best.

Please give your new blessing a hug from me,