Three years ago, our beautiful daughter was in the middle of what would be an almost six-month hospital stay. She was born with Down syndrome, and what seemed like an ever growing list of other medical issues. Saying her health was unstable, hardly paints the picture of her first few months. However, our Caroline Catherine not only moved mountains as she defied the odds of survival, she took all of us on a journey. It was a journey that we will not soon forget, continues to this day, and forever changes how we view our day to day lives. Caroline is the youngest of six children, and we did not know that she had Down syndrome before she was born. I can remember thinking, very early on, that I just wanted her to live. Initially, she was not able to breathe on her own and was quickly transferred to the closest NICU. So many people seemed focused on her Down syndrome diagnosis. Her father and I felt like that would be the least of our worries… as long as she lived. Days turned to weeks. Weeks turned to months. She was not moving forward, having many more issues, and the hospital was fighting our wish to move to a more specialized hospital. Caroline fought so very hard those first seven weeks, that we knew she deserved more of a future than what they were willing to speculate. Finally….the move occurred! Upon her arrival at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, Caroline’s many complex issues began to be broken down. And, as Caroline often still does, she threw the occasional monkey wrench into her plan of care. However, we were finally given hope. Caroline started to improve… fighting so valiantly each day. She endured heart surgery, months of being intubated, enlargement of her trachea, seizure issues, feeding issues, g-tube surgery, and kidney failure. This girl had more tests, IVs, central lines, and medication than I could have ever imagined. Yet, each day, she would look up from her little bed and "smile” with those beautiful eyes of hers… and I would know she had so much more to give. Fast forward, three years later… Caroline is attending preschool and absolutely loving it! She is working hard to catch up on all of her developmental goals! This girl simply does not give up or give in! Caroline, with many thanks to the doctors in Cincinnati, does not require oxygen or have a tracheotomy. She is able to freely explore her world! While she did not know the limitations those first doctors placed on her, she seems quite committed to proving them wrong one by one. As of last week, she began using a walker in her PT sessions. And, I think at this point, is when I said to myself…”now this is a great story!” Caroline works hard, she laughs harder and reminds us often, to never let someone else determine what your future success can be!