As if it was yesterday…A day that we lived through with mixed feelings – happiness, pain, tears, worries and hope were all blended together. That was July 21, 2014 when our Michaela was born with Down Syndrome. We hope that time will erase from our memory all the people who poisoned this important day with their negative comments. I was still under anesthesia when the doctor told me that my baby probably had Down Syndrome and some tests would be done. The doctor and his team of nurses and midwives were supposedly the ones from whom we should have received support and information. Instead they said that our lives would turn into a nightmare. “Leave the child in a specialized home. Society does not accept people like her. It will be very hard for you. You are young and can have other kids. Your daughter will not survive the first year.” This is what they told us.
Luckily, we met a wonderful person at the hospital, our angel Ellie Todorova from Karin Dom. She is a psychologist and she did not ask us whether we would abandon Michaela. She gave us support and advice and contacts with Karin Dom and its qualified staff who would help us fight and take good care of our child. We called Karin Dom and were immediately included in their Early Intervention Program.
Two weeks after our daughter was born, Karin Dom experts visited us at home. A rehabilitator, a speech therapist and a psychologist started training us and Michaela. Their attitude is great and she is really looking forward their visits. We would like to thank Vladislava Doncheva, Svetlana Angelova and Ellie Todorova. Without them Michaela would not have achieved these outstanding results. She made her first step at one and walked steadily at 1.4. This is an outstanding achievement, having in mind that Down Syndrome children develop slower and usually do not walk until they are two years old. She was six months old when she said “dada” and seven months old when she said “mom”. At 1.6 she imitates sounds and tries to pronounce a lot of words.
Every child has the right to a good start in life, regardless of their physical state. Karin Dom makes this possible. They are with us every step of our way – we thank them with all our hearts. We wish more children and families with special needs would have the chance to feel such support and professionalism. Miracles are possible when a child gets a chance and has experts who help.
Today, Michaela is two and a half. She goes to kindergarten and loves being around her friends. She continues with her therapy at the Center for Social Integration and Rehabilitation at Karin Dom and the experts are very pleased with her progress…the progress of our little brave girl with huge potential and a wonderful smile.
Silvena Hristova, Michaela’s mother