Mia's latest message is for people to stop using the 'R' word "because it affects people badly."
"I'm so sorry." The Armstrong family has been hearing these three words a lot ever since their daughter Mia was born ten years ago. Starting from the doctor who informed them that their little girl has Down syndrome to strangers who cross their path in public, everyone seemed to believe that a child with this genetic condition was a misfortune. However, having shared their lives with Mia for all these years, the Armstrongs know that this couldn't be further from the truth. The sassy youngster does not "let that little extra chromosome define her or slow her down," states her website, and has instead taken charge of her destiny.
Mia — an actress, model, daredevil, and self-advocate — believes Down syndrome is her superpower. "People with Down syndrome are capable, smart, and strong. People like me belong in this world. The world needs more kindness and love. People like me are brave, strong, and good for [the] environment!," she says in a TikTok video. Mia and her mom, Cara, use her popular Instagram profile to change how the world sees people with Down Syndrome by showing her 23.6k followers that she is just like everyone else.
Once they'd gotten over the "initial shock and sadness" regarding Mia's diagnosis, which the Armstrongs explained, was based on "an inaccurate picture of what people with Down Syndrome can accomplish today," the family quickly realized that their youngest daughter was a special child. "She just has this emotional intelligence — she's really smart, she has regular intelligence too — but she has this emotional intelligence that I have just never encountered before," Cara said during the family's appearance on The View. "She knows what we need when we need it. She loves us the way that we need to be loved and she's literally the glue that binds our family together."
"Mia prefers pants to dresses, french fries to green beans, a bob haircut to flowing locks and isn't afraid to say the first thing that comes to her mind, even if it borders on inappropriate," the talented youngster's website states. "Mia made history in 2018 as she was the first person with Down syndrome to appear on the ABC television show The View. Appearing alongside her mother Cara and brother Jacko, the world learned that the three words that have been said most often to the Armstrong family since Mia's birth are 'I'm so sorry!' Mia and her family want the world to know that they aren't sorry! Mia is changing the way that the world perceives individuals with Down syndrome. Her life matters and she was created for a purpose."
The young girl also provides occasional etiquette lessons through her profile, giving out tips on what NOT to do when you see someone with Down syndrome in public. "[If] you see Mia in Target, don't point, don't whisper, [and] don't look the other way. I'm just like you," Mia explains in one video. Her latest message is for people to stop using the 'R' word. "It's important that you don't use the 'R' word because it affects people badly," she explained in a recent interview with Good Morning America.
"A lot of us hear the same three words and those words are 'I'm so sorry.' And what Mia and I, the whole mission of our social media account is to let the world know that they shouldn't be sorry. That Down syndrome is something that we celebrate," Cara said in the interview. "[We're] really painting a really accurate picture of what life with a child with Down syndrome looks like. That's one of the most important things is that, as parents, we present the world with an accurate view of what Down syndrome looks like because people with Down syndrome can achieve great things and they're doing amazing things. Mia just teaches us every day to be bold about the things that we want to do and to take chances."