September was a busy month for Oobi Josee! She ventured overseas to America for both ‘work’ and play (Oobi clothing packed in her suitcase of course!).
Josee was diagnosed in utero with Down syndrome at only 13 weeks gestation. Her parents were told she wouldn’t survive pregnancy as she also had an additional diagnosis of hydrops; whereby fluid had accumulated in several parts of her body. By 18 weeks gestation though, the fluid had disappeared, and at almost 42 weeks she entered the world as a big, healthy baby despite her diagnosis.
Josee has grown up in the public eye, her parents started her Facebook page when she was only 2 months old to keep her local community updated on her progress. Her mama Joelle started an online support group for mothers facing a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome for their unborn baby at the same time. Josee’s Facebook page has also become an additional resource for these women, giving them a positive resource for their worrisome pregnancies.
Since then her page has connected families around the world who have a child with Down syndrome. The page aims to showcase the ‘Ordinary Life of an Extra-Ordinary Girl’ – with the extra relating to her extra chromosome! Josee’s parents are devoted to breaking down the negative stigma and outdated stereotypes surrounding Down syndrome.
Josee’s time in America was spilt into three parts; holidaying, meeting people within the American Down syndrome community and receiving some specific therapy.
Josee visited Disney World in Florida; the highlight was at the’ Magic Kingdom’ when Queen Elsa blew her a kiss in the Disney Grand Parade! Everywhere Josee went in Disney she was greeted with a smile and she also put a smile on the faces of those she met too. At Universal Studios Josee wore her Oobi Pixie Peach Floral Dress and received plenty of compliments.
Also in Florida Josee received three full days of a specific therapy called MNRI (Masgutova Neurosensorimotor Reflex Integration). This therapy was targeted specifically at Josee’s reflexes, many of which were missing at birth. This therapy was a huge success with many notable improvements observed after these three days. Josee’s family were very grateful for her online community that donated money towards this cost and hope to continue to pursue this therapy for her.
In Minneapolis Josee and her family attended a Down syndrome Retreat. At this retreat they met many families that follow her Facebook page. Joelle was also so thrilled to meet other women who had supported her online when she was pregnant with Josee. The Down syndrome community is one that opens arms, no matter how far away families may live from one another.
Josee’s parents say that Josee was a perfect traveller and took the long haul flights and each busy day in her stride. They hope to return to the States in the not too distant future.
‘The cotton dress was perfect for a hot humid day in Florida! Said her parents’
Josee is a gorgeous advocate for inclusive advertising and we couldn’t be more proud! Her adventure with changing the face of beauty has been shared across a number of platforms, spreading the inspiring message of diversity in the fashion world. She’s a little girl with a big message and we look forward to following her throughout this journey.
‘Josee had many compliments given to her when she wore her Oobi dress, it was really lovely to have so many people give her a smile and a wave when she wore it!’