I'mPossible: The Surprising Upside of Raising Any Down Syndrome Child
by Ildikó Németh
I’mPossible: The Surprising Upside of Raising Any Down Syndrome Child is the first-person account of a mother’s courageous fight to give her child a normal, healthy, and vibrant childhood. Ildikó Németh takes us through her family’s journey from the birth of her third child, Aaron, to his successful transition into adulthood. Written in three parts, Ildikó holds nothing back in her storytelling. She brings us into her most intimate and private moments from finding out her 3-day old child has Down Syndrome to describing all her mistakes, seeming failures and triumphs of parenting a child with a brain disability. It is her disarming honesty, humor and ruthless compassion that makes this book especially valuable for anyone with the arduous and heroic blessing of raising a child with Down Syndrome. She supplies her reader with all the inner workings of day-to-day life with a DS child, how her family adapted to the experience and what it took to give her child a “normal” childhood. She takes us through her many journeys and lessons starting with acknowledging and addressing her own prejudice and fear of raising a DS child to learning how to recognize and gracefully fight against societal stigmas and biases. And she teaches her readers how she muscled her way into society so her child could benefit from school, gymnastics classes, bus rides and every other aspect of “normal” life. From a general point of view, Ildikó Németh has created a blueprint for any parent raising a child with a disability. Although she speaks directly about Down Syndrome, her lessons, setbacks, and challenges are universal. The way her family learned to adapt and care for their son and sibling will have resonant notes and applicability for any family facing these challenges. She also gets into a very specific 4-year process that her entire family, her inner circle and even volunteers undertook to actively raise Aaron’s IQ level, physical stamina and physiological heartiness. Their dedication to this arduous and demanding program led to the most successful outcome anyone would dare imagine. Aaron, in his early twenties by the end of the book, is a fully realized human being. He is a happy, healthy, self-confident, and self-governing individual with some pretty big dreams. These dreams are coming to fruition through his dedication, determination, hard work and joyous embrace and zest for life. She also takes the time to describe in detail what DS is, how the body is affected by the brain disability and the various approaches, both historical and modern, to improving the lives of DS children and adults. Ildikó Németh has the courage to bring us into her most intimate journey of her family’s struggles and triumphs. With this book, she has told all the secrets and humorously exposed the lies and stereotypes of Down Syndrome and indeed living with “disability” daily. She has also laid out a blueprint and step-by-step guide for rooting out one’s own fears and prejudices, combatting cultural and societal “norms” and organizing a family into a highly adaptable organism to produce a gifted, intelligent and unconditionally enthusiastic whole human being without leaving anyone else in the family out of this rewarding process. If you want to read to a first-hand account of what it’s like to raise a DS child that is both harrowing and heart-warming in its storytelling, this book is for you. If you are a parent or caregiver looking for guidance, help or a lifeline with answers this book will be your most invaluable investment for raising your beautiful child into an invaluable and gifted member of society.