Baby Ruby – World Downs Syndrome Day. #WDSD2014

I came away from Ruby’s shoot with an achey face – if you follow my Facebook page and blog then you will know that as well as being a wedding photographer I adore photographing children and babies. I arrived at Ruby’s house to be greeted with THE biggest, happiest smile and while Laura made a cup of tea Ruby laughed, giggled and smiled at me, her beautiful big smile really is infectious and as I write, I am smiling, just because Ruby did.

I love the images, Ruby’s Mummy and Daddy love the images and as it is World Downs Syndrome Day/Week and Ruby’s first birthday we thought it would be nice for Laura, Ruby’s Mummy to write a guest blog post to, well, just help raise a little bit of awareness – I have not edited her words at all.

Please do ‘Like’ and ‘Share’ – more than anything though, just keep smiling folks, it is the way forward.

So, over to Mummy Laura…………
I had the most amazing pregnancy, apart from my ever growing bump I didn’t feel pregnant, so when I went in to labour at 36 weeks 4 days it was a bit of a shock. It was going to be the happiest day of our lives, and it was, it was just a bit different to how we imagined!

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Less than an hour after Ruby was born a doctor came in and asked if we noticed anything different about our baby, I didn’t, but out of nowhere I said “has she got Down’s syndrome?” he confirmed that he thought she did. He apologised over and over, I have no idea why he was so apologetic, I really just wanted him to get out of the room and let my husband and I be alone with our perfect baby girl.  In that moment I didn’t care about her diagnosis, I was just over the moon to be a mummy. The midwives came in to our room later on and handed us some leaflets on Down’s syndrome, I still haven’t looked at them a year later.
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We were told that due to her low muscle tone I probably wouldn’t be able to breastfeed her especially as she was 3 and a half weeks early weighing 5lb11oz, this made me more determined. I decided from day 1 I wasn’t going to let anyone tell me my daughter couldn’t do anything because of Downs Syndrome.
 It was very difficult, she would fall asleep as soon as she started feeding, I spent most of my time blowing on her face to wake her up, after 6 weeks of feeding her every half hour just about 24/7 we started making progress, by 3 months it became easy. I have nothing against formula feeding (before Ruby was born I was only planning on breastfeeding for 6 weeks) but this is just something I had to do for myself, something I had control of that no one could take away from me. We proved the doctors wrong and Ruby has got to a year old and never had a bottle, like I said before, I am not anti formula feeding, I am just very proud of Ruby doing something she was told she wouldn’t be able to do and I’m sure she will continue to prove to people that she is more than able.
Before Ruby arrived I had never given Down’s syndrome a second thought. If anyone had asked me to describe someone with Down’s syndrome I would have mentioned stereotypes, the almond shaped eyes, the learning disability, the “loving and caring” nature. I am embarrassed to say I probably wouldn’t have put the person before the diagnosis. People with Down’s syndrome are all individuals, influenced more by family and environment, the same as every other person.
Ruby is loving, caring and happy a lot of the time but that’s because she is loved not because of an extra chromosome.
Friday 21st of March is World Downs Syndrome Day, this time last year I was just setting off on this amazing adventure, I’m sure having a child will change anyone but having a child with Downs Syndrome has made me appreciate the simple things. Ruby can do anything that she wants to do, she just has to try harder, this makes the little milestones that are often taken for granted that extra special. I still remember how over the moon I was when she first started playing with her feet 🙂
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http://www.futureofdowns.com – the most amazing source of information
https://www.facebook.com/Losethelabel – a fab campaign promoting person first language
http://www.worlddownsyndromeday.org/wdsd-2014 – about world Down’s syndrome day
www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ju-q4OnBtNU – a lovely video “dear future mum”
  • Emma Talha - March 19, 2014 - 10:00 pm

    What a beautiful little girl. Those blue eyes are gorgeous. Someone will be breaking a few hearts when she’s older. I bet mummy and daddy are so proud, Ruby is adorable x

  • rachel - March 19, 2014 - 10:30 pm

    Beautiful images of a very beautiful little girl! The blog is fantastic xxx

  • Phyllisjoyce - March 20, 2014 - 7:52 am

    Her smile has lit up my day. A truly beautiful little girl.

  • Pam Hordon - March 21, 2014 - 7:33 am

    Beautiful images of a beautiful little girl!

  • Leonie Smith - March 21, 2014 - 10:31 pm

    Absolutely fantastic pictures of a gorgeous little girl. The camera never lies, Beautiful inside and out. x

  • Natalie Swaby - March 21, 2014 - 10:52 pm

    Reading this story brought me to tears. My little boy Blake and Ruby were born weeks apart and met very early on at Rhythm Time in Windermere. I often found myself staring at Ruby and her mum. Ruby’s smile was indeed infectious and having read Ruby’s mum’s story I can understand why… Because ruby was so loved and so happy. And that is all a little person needs. 🙂

  • valerie howie - August 30, 2016 - 3:46 pm

    I am Ruby’s Granny. When she was born I must admit I was frightened. Not because of the Downs but the thought she may have all sorts of physical problems. But none of that was true. She is three now and has taught me so much about myself, my views and my in built capacity for love. She is the light of our lives and literally life is so much better because of her. I rejoice that she is my Granddaughter and the future is wonderful to contemplate in watching her grow and develop inside the love of us all but particularly the love of her Mummy and Daddy and now her baby sister.

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