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Gifts: Mothers Reflect on How Children with Down Syndrome Enrich Their Lives [Paperback]

By Kathryn Lynard Soper (Editor) & Martha Sears (Foreward By)
Our Price $ 16.11  
Retail Value $ 18.95  
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Item Number 286659  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   292
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.9" Width: 5.9" Height: 0.7"
Weight:   0.95 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   May 15, 2007
Publisher   Woodbine House
ISBN  1890627852  
EAN  9781890627850  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Having a baby with Down syndrome is not something most parents would willingly choose. Yet many who travel this path discover rich, unexpected rewards along the way. In this candid and poignant collection of personal stories, sixty-three mothers describe the gifts of respect, strength, delight, perspective, and love, which their child with Down syndrome has brought into their lives. The contributors to this collection have diverse personalities and perspectives, and draw from a wide spectrum of ethnicity, world views, and religious beliefs. Some are parenting within a traditional family structure; some are not. Some never considered terminating their pregnancy; some struggled with the decision. Some were calm at the time of diagnosis; some were traumatized. Some write about their pregnancy and the months after giving birth; some reflect on years of experience with their child. Their diverse experiences point to a common truth: The life of a child with Down syndrome is something to celebrate. These women have something to say -- not just to other mothers but to all of us.This book offers crucial information and perspective to pregnant women facing a pre or post-natal Down Syndrome diagnosis. GIFTS is especially timely given the new 2007 guidelines from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), which recommends that all women, regardless of age, receive screening for Down syndrome. Statistics show that most of these diagnoses result in abortion; if more women are screened the fear is that there will be fewer babies born with Down syndrome. The question is how informed are these decisions? If better information were available to women -- a copy of GIFTS, counseling that's more up-to-date -- would the trend be different? GIFTS has already garnered interest from writers and Down syndrome advocates who are concerned about the lack of comprehensive information provided to women facing a pre-natal Down syndrome diagnosis. Recent studies by Dr. Brian Skotko, published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (2005) and Pediatrics (2005) note that many doctors are inadequately prepared to deliver a diagnosis of Down syndrome, and often use negative language or out-of-date information. GIFTS offers pregnant women, their families, doctors, and geneticists with concrete, ultimately positive, personal stories - 63 voices -- about what it's really like to have and raise a child with Down syndrome today, including the fear, loneliness, and sadness some women confronted along the way.

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More About Kathryn Lynard Soper & Martha Sears

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Kathryn Lynard Soper is the mother of seven children. Her youngest, Thomas, born in 2005, was diagnosed with Down syndrome at birth. She's the author of a memoir about Thomas, The Year My Son and I Were Born, and the editor of two anthologies, Gifts and The Mother in Me. She is president of The Segullah Group, Inc., a nonprofit organization that produces personal writings, and editor-in-chief of Segullah, a literary journal by and for Latter-day Saint (Mormon) women. Kathryn lives with her husband, Reed, and their children in the mountain west.

Kathryn L. Soper currently resides in Salt Lake City.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
A Gift in Itself  May 31, 2008
This is a warm and touching read. It was a pleasure hearing the stories of parents of children with Down's. As a Speech Pathologist and Teacher of the Speech/Language Impaired, I would highly recommend this to both my collegues and clients.
Valuable Resource  May 17, 2008
"Down syndrome is the most common genetic condition, happening once in every 730 births. Down syndrome occurs among people of all races and all economic levels and affects more than 350,000 American families." The sixty-three women who share their stories of raising a child with Down syndrome in "Gifts: Mothers Reflect on How Children with Down Syndrome Enrich Their Lives" breathe life into that statistic.

Kathryn Lynard Soper's son Thomas was born premature and with Down syndrome. In inviting women to share their stories in "Gifts" she wanted to "create the book I wished I could have read during the long dark winter following Thomas's birth." These stories are stories of hope and love and of children who change the lives of the families they entered. There is pain, too: the pain of difficult medical procedures, lost hopes, and adjusting to a life different from the one envisioned. However, none of these women would change their lives. They love their children and have learned much from them. As Sopor states, all of these mothers have "come to understand that life - including life with an extra chromosome - is a gift. A good gift."

"Gifts" is incredibly pro-life. Many of these women were given the option to terminate their pregnancy. For some, there was no question that they were going to carry their child through to birth. Others struggled long and hard with the decision. All chose life. As mother Catherine Finn states, "I want the world to understand that every child, whether they have a disability or not, deserves equal opportunities to grow and develop. I want to emphasize that children with Down syndrome are more similar than different when compared with other children."

"Gifts" is an amazing book with parenting lessons even for those whose children don't have disabilities. The stories will open your eyes and touch your heart. It is an invaluable resource for those facing a diagnosis of Down syndrome in their own child.
This is THE book for new parents to read  Apr 25, 2008
When I found out my daughter had Ds (at her birth), I was initially devestated. My fears drove me to devour anything written about Ds, and my sister ordered several books from this site while I was still recovering in the hospital. Most of the books detailed the medical and developmental issues many children with Ds face, and I found them disheartening. I finally had to put them aside and just focus on loving my daughter and getting to know her. I wish I had read THIS book at that time, as I would have found much comfort in it. My daughter is now 4-years-old and she truly is a rare gift. I would highly recommend this book for new (and not so new!) parents, grandparents, etc. TEN STARS!!!
Such a beautiful book  Mar 21, 2008
I am a new(ish) mother of a beautiful little 11 month old baby girl who has down syndrome. I have never been able to finish a book on ds as I always found them upsetting and depressing but this book was quite simply THE most beautiful & moving book on the subject I have ever read. As the other reviewers said, I could only read a few stories at a time with a big box of tissues beside me as I inevitably ended up crying, but they were tears of empathy and joy and I felt so lucky & proud to have my little princess sleeping in the next room that a few times I almost went in to cuddle her while she was asleep just from reading about the other very special little children. This is an amazing book, I wish I had had it in those first few terrible, bleak, dark months of trying to adjust to her diagnosis. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
A Mom's Choice Awards Recipient!  Mar 20, 2008
The Mom's Choice Awards® honors excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. An esteemed panel of judges includes education, media and other experts as well as parents, children, librarians, performing artists, producers, medical and business professionals, authors, scientists and others. A sampling of the panel members includes: Dr. Twila C. Liggett, Ten-time Emmy-winner, professor and founder of Reading Rainbow; Julie Aigner-Clark, Creator of Baby Einstein and The Safe Side Project; Jodee Blanco, New York Times Best-Selling Author; LeAnn Thieman, Motivational speaker and coauthor of seven Chicken Soup For The Soul books; Tara Paterson, Certified Parent Coach, and founder of The Just For Mom Foundation(tm) and the Mom's Choice Awards®. Parents and educators look for the Mom's Choice Awards® seal in selecting quality materials and products for children and families. This book has been honored by this distinguished award.

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