Hi, my name is Tayla, I am 9 years old.

I had a bit of a tricky start. When I was in my mum's tummy, the doctors said I had a heart condition called Complete AVSD, this means I had a hole in the upper and lower part of my heart, and a bit of a funny valve. My mum and dad were very worried when they were told this.

I was born at full term, I almost came into the world in the back of mum and dad’s car!!! I spent four days in hospital while doctors and consultants monitored me then I was ready to go home. Some days I was very tired and didn't want to drink a lot of milk, even though mummy insisted. I liked to be sick all over her, I’ve never seen my mummy move so fast.

Everything was going well until I reached 6 months old, I had para-influenza pneumonia, the doctors said I wasn't going to make it. Well I was going to make it! With a lot of strength, determination and help from my friends at Leicester Royal Infirmary Hospital I recovered well.

When I was 10 months old, I had open heart surgery at Glenfield Hospital and made it home in record time 6 days!!! I’ve got some very clever friends.

I joined UpsnDowns when I was 14 months old. I love UpsnDowns because I get to spend time with my other friends that don’t go to my school. They do lots of things that really help me and my family. We look at UpsnDowns as our extended family.

I started mainstream school and really enjoyed it, making lots of friends and having fun. I am still in mainstream school and am currently in year 4, I don’t like school as much as I did but I think that's because my helpers make me work harder - BORING!!!

What I do enjoy is going with my friends to the cinema, theme parks, the zoo and going out for dinner. There are lots of things I like to do. I go horse riding, swimming and gymnastics.

I love ‘7 Super Girls’ on my iPad (this drives my mum insane), being a diva and talking everyone’s ears off. I like spending time with my big brother and driving him crazy too.

Life is good and I'm doing great.

I am NOT Down’s syndrome, I'm Tayla. Thanks for reading my story.