Mia Armstrong on her children’s book “I Am a Masterpiece!” detailing life as a person with Down syndrome

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Actor and model Mia Armstrong says that she views Down syndrome as a superpower. She writes in her new children’s book, “I Am a Masterpiece!” that mean words bounce off her “like a super shield.”

Mia, 13, details many other life experiences in her new book. She also goes into the unique perspective she holds and also shares an important message of inclusivity and kindness. 

“I want them to look and me and be kind to others with or without disabilities,” Mia said. 

Cara Armstrong, Mia’s mother, describes the experience of raising a child with Down syndrome as both a privilege and a learning journey. This insight inspired them to co-author the book. Armstrong said she believes there’s a gap in resources for parents to appropriately explain Down syndrome to children.

“I think that’s one area that we’re lacking in is the tools for parents to sit and explain in an age-appropriate way what it means to have Down syndrome and that removes the barriers for Mia to have to answer those questions. If kids come armed with information, then friendship is the next step,” she said.

Mia and her mother said that patience is key, especially when others might forget their manners out of unfamiliarity with Down syndrome. Armstrong said she noticed people staring at Mia in a store once and realized the importance of empowering them to ask good questions as a key to inclusion.

Through her daily life, Mia’s mother said Mia teaches her family about patience and persistence.

“It’s a privilege to raise a child with Down syndrome,” Armstrong said. “You inspire me everyday because you never give up and you live in the moment.”

Besides her advocacy and literary efforts, Mia said she enjoys activities like surfing and rollercoasters.

“I’m sort of a daredevil,” Mia said.

Despite the challenges of juggling multiple roles, Mia said she approaches life with joy and determination, saying, “It feels good to do all those things, but it’s a little bit stressful to do all together, so we do it in separate pieces.”

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