On the 24th of November 2011, Hayley Goleniowska wrote her very first post “ What to Say When a Baby is Born with Down’s Syndrome”
Afraid of who would criticise, certain no-one would read it and unsure of the form the blog would take, she nervously sent her personal thoughts anonymously into the ether.
A year on and she has come so very far!
It’s been an organic journey that has taken her to extraordinary places, meeting amazing people with inspirational stories, and has seen her become part of remarkable teams to help others coming to terms with a child with Down’s Syndrome.
I have a cousin who is one month younger than myself who was born with Down’s Syndrome, and I remember my Mum telling me how my Auntie Angela struggled with so many difficult emotions 50 years ago with no help or support. My lovely cousin Millie is still such an inspiring part of our family and I only wish Downs Side Up had been around to encourage, support and nurture my Auntie Angela all those years ago.
Hayley has had a wonderful year with of course, the ups as well as the downs, with the trolls, the media, the TV, the children, the nominations, the awards, the competitions, learning about Facebook and Twitter and all the many social media networks people need to embrace these days to keep up, as well as her learning to do radio interviews at 30 minutes notice, meeting Dr Hilary Jones on “Daybreak” to her daughter Natty breakdancing with dance troop “Flawless.” ! 🙂
But mainly it’s been about her selfless and powerful message to make sure that the right doors have opened, the minds that need to be enlightened have been, and the families that have been inspired have been heard.
I want to introduce you to the very inspiring Hayley and join me in wishing Downs Side Up a Very Happy Birthday !