Hello! Welcome to our family blog, ‘Down With Asa’!!!!
We’re glad you’ve come to our page, thank you. A note on the name of the site. It’s a play on words really, in two senses. Asa has Down’s syndrome but he’s also a cool kid. So when we use the word ‘down’ here, it’s not to mean ‘sad’.
Now that’s out of the way…
A bit about our family. Well, there’s me, mummy blogger Lizz. I am married to a wonderful, lovely, handsome man called Jon. We have two gorgeous and healthy children, Emelia and Asa. Emelia is a cheeky, funny, adorable, typical pre-schooler. She makes us laugh each and every day! See her own blog page ‘Emelia’s Quotes’.
My background is youth and community work. I graduated from university in 2007 with a 2:1 in Community Studies, specialising in Youth Work, from the University of Wales, Newport. I finished working in March 2010, just before I had Emelia. A little while later I was pregnant with Asa. One day I hope to return to work, but for now I am loving life at home raising these two precious children. Jon is a Senior IT Officer for a local council and works very hard at providing financially for our family. Jon and I are Christians. Not nominal ‘religious’ Christians, but Jesus loving people, saved by grace, who try our best to live for God each day.
This blog started out a bit like cheap therapy for me (Lizz). Writing is really helpful for me, and I really enjoy it. It helps focus my thoughts and get things in perspective. It’s also a chance for me to blow off steam!! I have written in a journal since my early teens, whether it’s been a prayer diary or a specific Bible study journal. Since having Emelia I write things down a bit less now in my journal, but I do ‘Tweet’ and use ‘Facebook’ to share thoughts about life, faith and family…and now Down’s syndrome and associated issues!
While I was carrying Asa inside me, we had a few ‘bumps’ throughout the pregnancy. We faced various statistics – the biggest one was a 1 in 2 chance of our baby having a chromosome abnormality, the most common being Down’s Syndrome but others included Edwards, Pataus and Turners syndromes. For our full pregnancy journey, why not have a look at ‘The Pregnancy’ page under the ‘About Us’ heading.
I’m writing this ‘About Me’ section six months after Asa was born. When he was a newborn, we had to leave him at the hospital for 4 weeks due to complications – two infections, stomach aspirates, bilious sick and difficulty feeding. The day after he was born, his paediatrician told us he thought Asa had Down’s syndrome. Almost a week after he was born, the blood test confirmed the presence of an extra copy of the 21st chromosome in every cell of his body. In the medical field, this is known as Trisomy 21. In ‘everyday’ language, we call it Down’s Syndrome.
I began writing my thoughts down while Asa was a few days old and still in hospital. It was a way of helping me cope. Jon and I both had the idea of starting a blog. A long story short, here we are! I’m not really sure of the purpose of the blog, other than to be a space for me to share thoughts and feelings, and also to share our family story with our family and friends. Who knows, it may even help another family who are facing a diagnosis of Down’s syndrome.
By all means, please leave comments on the blog posts – I know you’re reading it then!!!! But more importantly, thanks to all our family and friends for your continued support and love. Asa and Emelia are both very blessed to be surrounded by such encouragement and compassion!
The Four Shaws: Lizz, Jon, Emelia and Asa