The Acceptance Speech

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So, if you follow us on Facebook (Hello! *waves enthusiastically*) you’ll already know that Hannah received an award recently.

Oh. M. G…..AN AWARD!!!

You know, every day I’m proud of (and in awe of…and often completely jaded by) this frequently scruffy, fun loving, AMAZING kid, who grasps life by the throat, gives it a good shake around (and maybe a bit of a bite) and then just gets on with it.

If only I could bottle her zest for life.  I’d make an absolute fortune!

But my heart could’ve burst with pride when she collected her certificate and award.  OK, so we’ll quickly skip over the bit where she threw her certificate on the floor and I swiftly accepted the trophy on her behalf (in anticipation of her lobbing that too and taking someone’s eye out).

But she accepted it, nonetheless.

What was the award for?  Well, Hannah was the recipient of a Rainbow House Conductive Education Achievement Award.  Ooooh!

Just in case you didn’t know, Rainbow House is a place we’ve been attending for several years now…it’s been our lifeline in many ways…and she received the award for ‘signing’ appropriately during her Conductive Education sessions (I wished she’d do that at home for me! *sobs*) AND for always smiling.  Yep, I can absolutely vouch for that.  Well, actually, she doesn’t always smile – that’s an exaggeration. Nevertheless, she does it quite often. Thankfully.

So, for any new visitors to our blog (Hello to you too! *waving vigorously whilst on tip toes*), Hannah has a rare genetic syndrome which pretty much affects most aspects of her life, including currently (although we never say never here at Broccoli HQ) being non-verbal and extremely limited in her communication skills.  So, sadly, she couldn’t say thank you or anything else for that matter, when she received her award.

But I got to thinking, you know, as you do sometimes.  What IF she was able to make an acceptance speech at an awards ceremony, what might she say?

Hmmm…. *scratches head*

OK, so we’re not talking about receiving an Oscar or a BAFTA here (this one’s far more important!) – where you thank every man and his dog , blubber quite dramatically whilst throwing in a bit of a statement on some hot topic or other,  but just bear with me on this if you can.  Well, let’s have a bash at predicting what she might’ve said, shall we?…and perchance, have bit of fun with it too.  Because, TBH, many of my posts seem to have made at least one person cry and that’s never been my intention.  Really!  So, if you get even remotely misty eyed by this post, I’ll be mightily fed up.  Get it? Got it?  Good.

Right, here goes…

Let’s imagine some preened, affluently dressed, famous kinda chap stood on a big stage.  He opens the golden envelope, pausing for dramatic effect, then announces with a dazzling, veneered smile….

…”and the winner is…Hannah!”

The orchestra strike up.

The crowd goes completely bonkers and everyone jumps up out of their seats. The standing ovation, clapping and cheering lasts for…erm…let’s say, 4 minutes.

I’ve absolutely no idea why I said 4. It just sounded good.

Hannah then swishes up the steps in her fancy frock, wearing more diamonds than the contents of a Tiffany & Co store.

…but maybe looking a bit scruffy to boot, because, let’s face it, it’s been all of FIVE MINUTES (yep, that’s all it takes…tops!) since she got dolled up.  Well, unkemptness IS one of her endearing attributes, after all!

She takes a moment to compose herself and the crowds’ cheers and applause gradually subside.

It’s so quiet that a pin is heard dropping somewhere…and then she begins…

There’s a Proverb that goes “It takes a village to raise a child”.  Well, we have some really amazing villagers here, some not so good and there’ve been some downright, absolutely dire ones too.

To those villagers, no matter how small their positive contribution, for helping me get to where I am today – Thank you!  You have made a difference. 

There are far too many people to thank individually, but, of course, I need to mention a few of the significant ones and acknowledge the part they’ve played in my life. 

But firstly, to my critics, the starers and those who’ve made stupid remarks. You are, in part, responsible for helping to make my mummy stronger and more determined than she ever imagined she could be.  Your scepticism, speculation and stupidity has been invaluable. *blows a raspberry*

To Cornelia de Lange Syndrome – UP YOURS!  *shakes angry fist*  You haven’t beaten me yet….nor do we ever intend for you to.  Be afraid, be VERY afraid!

(Authors note: Please be advised that, despite being rather fond of the occasional *coughs* expletive, I wouldn’t teach my child to say ‘up yours’ .  So there’s no need to get all uppity and try telling me off.  However, over the years, I confess that I have uttered FAR worse monikers for this damned syndrome that’d make your hair curl! Mind you, IF, one day, the only words that ever came out of her mouth were ‘up yours’ we would most definitely be celebrating and throwing a party…as we say ‘Up North’, ’beggars can’t be choosers!’). 

Anyway, back to her speech….

To Rainbow House, for giving us a glimmer of hope all those years ago…and for so much fun since.  We’d have been lost without you.

To the few who’ve bothered to send an occasional text or email or phoned to ask how I’m doing.  Thank you.  It means a LOT!  Mummy and Daddy don’t forget.

To Aunty Pauline on the school bus, for putting up with me when I nip and bite you.  Sorry!  I DO love you. 

To all the people worldwide who’re following our blog and Facebook page.  Thank you!  The fact that you’ve chosen to travel with us on our bumpy journey and celebrate my achievements with us is just heart-warming and sometimes, quite overwhelming.  Mwah! *blows kisses*

To the Broccoli farmers who’ve supplied me with the ‘Green Stuff’ for all these years – I salute you!

…oh, and thanks go also to the producers of my mummy’s ‘Special Saturday Night Juice’.  I think Daddy calls it Prosecco.

Eternal thanks for all the love, fun and care from my Aunties at Care club who couldn’t possibly have anticipated what they were letting themselves in for *looks away innocently*…but have done (and are doing) a fabulous job.  And to the kids there who love me JUST the way I am and who draw lovely pictures for me.  Hugs and kisses!

To my four beloved Grandparents for their love, prayers, belief and immense pride.  We know this journey has been pretty hard for you all too.  I miss my grandma and grandpa in Heaven, but I’m sure they’re watching over me ❤

To Boris (not Johnson, btw!) – My first teddy – with whom (alongside my pacifiers and blanket) I became somewhat overly obsessive, to the point where I couldn’t focus on anything else when you were around.  I don’t know where you went, but I will never forget you.

 (Authors note again:  Fear not, dear reader.  Boris is perfectly safe and still with us…living in exile in the cupboard but desperately in need of a good scrub…shhhhh, it’ll be our little secret, OK? *wink*)


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See?  Filthy Boris LIVES…and he’s waving!


Thank you to my Teacher and TA’s this year.  For giving me some smashing opportunities to learn, for taking the time to get to know me, for making things fun and much more. 

To the lovely lady that cuts my hair…you are very brave and rather wonderful. 

To the professionals who actually bother(ed) to help me and made a difference…thank you!  To those that were more pre-occupied with ticking their boxes…well…just keep on ticking *shrugs shoulders with ambivalence*

My daddy.  I DO love you.  Thank you for your huggles, your lovely recipes that you and mummy have researched – all intended to help with my tummy problems, for throwing me around and getting me a bit too giddy sometimes because I REALLY love it (despite mummy’s disapproval and despair!).  You’re my best friend, staunch defender and partner in crime.

To my mummy.  Jack of all trades, master of none:  chauffeur, nurse, PA, Teacher, therapist, masseur, chef, stylist, go-to-girl, researcher, campaigner, general ‘fixer’ of things and my all time, forever, ‘Numero Uno’ aficionada.  I may’ve not shown you for years that I had an attachment to you and daddy….or acknowledged that you even existed sometimes.  But, I guess, if I didn’t have this syndrome, things would’ve been very different…I know you understand me far better than anyone.   Just keep calm and carry on. Oh, and get me a drink NOW *clicks fingers*…I’m thirsty!

So, many thanks for this award, it will be treasured!


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It took MANY attempts to get a half decent photo *sigh* Thanks also go to Mr Ainscough (pictured) for presenting the award and to Carole – a very patient photographer!


Hannah exits the stage gracefully (yeah, right!) to rapturous applause, holding (and NOT lobbing!) her award.

So, my lovelies, that’s almost it for this post.  But let’s wrap it up with a nice (and rather apt) quote I came across recently:

“Around here, we don’t look backwards for very long…we keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things because we’re curious…and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths”

Walt Disney

And so do we, Walt.  So do we! ❤

Thanks, as always, for stopping by.

Until next time

Annie xoxo

This post is dedicated to the children and young people who also received their awards on that day…and to their parents.  You’re awesome!


This entry was posted in Education, Miscellaneous, Silly stuff, Speech, language and communication, Syndromes/Special Needs, Therapy and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to The Acceptance Speech

  1. Fiona Perwitasari says:

    i’m very inspired of your blog, my nephew also had the same syndrome as Hannah, but he still 4 months…it’s amazing the spirit you have. Keep on be an amazing mom for Hannah. Both of you are wonderful parents for Hannah. XoX :).

    • Many thanks Fiona and thanks so much for reading and commenting. It’s always nice to connect with CdLS families around the world ❤ Say "Hi" to your baby nephew from us at Broccoli HQ. I hope he (and his family) is getting all the support he needs xx

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