Kristin was born in San Angelo, Texas, in 1985. Her family was stationed there, as her dad was in the military. Kristin has Down syndrome, and she was blessed to be born in San Angelo, as they had an awesome early intervention program. Very soon after she was born, we took her to their intervention program and they did physical therapy, in hopes that she would walk someday. They also did therapy for cognitive stimulation, (although her brother and sister did their own form of "cognitive stimulation" at home!) At the age of two, we moved to Colorado where her grandparents lived. The best grandparents in the world! They took care of Kristin, and helped her develop in many ways, as they did not treat her any different from all the other grandchildren. Having a big family was a constant form of physical and cognitive stimulation in its own right.
She was also lucky to be born in a time when the school district she lived in provided integration into regular classrooms. She attended preschool and Kindergarten, all with early intervention programs. She made it all the way to high school in these programs provided. Kristin attended several programs after she graduated high school and began the process of learning job skills through volunteer work.
Kristin is now 30 years old and holds a job as a Teachers' Helper at The Rise School, a preschool for children with disabilities. I believe she is an excellent example what early intervention can do for children with a disability, and what the future can hold for them, if given opportunities to be included from the very beginning.