As I Do – A Poem For My Brother Who Has Down Syndrome

Editor’s note: This is a guest post by  Ashlyn Klinkradt.  Ashlyn s 12 years old and she wrote this poem about her brother, David, who has Down syndrome.

As I Do

As I Do – by Ashely Klinkradt

Do you see him as I do?
With a smile on his face.
Or is he too different to you,
That you can’t see his grace?

Do you watch him as I do?
As he struggles to share.
Or is he so hard to understand,
You don’t hear what he says?

When you look at his eyes,
Do you see hope as I do?
Or is it just the different shape
That draws attention from you?

When he stands here in front of you
Sharing his dream
Can you see past his challenges
And become part of his team?

Do you see him as I do?
As courageous and handsome.
Down syndrome brings challenges
He has had to overcome.

So let me tell you a bit
About Down syndrome itself,
It has to do with an extra chromosome
In his or her self.

It affects how you look,
How you learn, how you grow.
But some things it won’t change
Is that your feelings you know.

So take time with these children
Who are different to us
And give them a place in this world
With genuine love and with trust.


Ashlyn KlinkradtAshlyn Klinkradt is 12 and in Grade 6 and is the oldest of 3 children. She has been advocating for children with disabilities since she was in Grade 1 (7 years old).  At the ag of 8 she became a Chaeli Campaign Pay-It-Forward Ambassador (see, and has been raising funds and awareness ever since.  She speaks annually for Down Syndrome Awareness Day to children at her school.  She has also spoken at The Durbanville Baptist Church’s ladies conference as a guest speaker (2014) and more recently she was keynote speaker at the Iris House Childrens Hospice Cuppa-4-Care fundraiser (September 2015).  Ashlyn also enjoys partnering her youngest brother in wheelchair dancing, playing hockey, drama, tennis.

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