Me and my mate, James.

Me and my mate James, who turned fifty recently. Standard day for James is dressing up in various outfits, hats or masks (as a clown, police officer, Elvis, etc), listening to music and generally having fun with others and on his own. He loves unabashedly and everyday it’s your birthday — he sings happy birthday to you while trying to give you something of his own, as a gift. Gorgeous.

He has Down syndrome, and his mind is about that of a three year old. Yet he ‘gets’ me and loves me unconditionally. I used to be one of his support workers. Now I’m his friend. So honoured.

He has nicknames for all those special in his life. Mine is ‘Beat beat’ and ‘Beat beat Tracey’ we only guess it’s because I’m usually dancing and singing around the place.

Here we are dressed in his clown stuff and he’s wearing the pirate hat I gave him while using a colouring-in book (one of the things I got him for his birthday). I love him and I am so happy he has such a wonderful loving family, a lovely home, and fabulous carers who love him and help him to live HIS best life. It truly enriches his life.

We all should do what we love in life to be happy. And James’s happiness, kindness and great loving heart is inspirational, beautiful, and a joy to be around x

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