My son Aaron was born on 7th October, 1998. We were told Aaron was born with whole in heart and that he had 22q Deletion/DiGeorge Syndrome. We were shocked but later told it was hereditary and that it came from myself as I was born with whole in heart too.
We were told that Aaron had a heart condition called Tetralogy of Fallots, which he had repaired when he was 2 years old and he had a stent fitted later when he was 12 years old. He was very ill after and was on ventilator for 12 weeks but eventually pulled through.
He eventually came home. As he grew up he encountered alot of problems at school mainly with socialising and making friends as well. However he carried on the best he could.
He showed all the symptoms of DiGeorge Syndrome but learnt to cope with them, though he still has a lot of issues. Now he is coping really well and I am proud what he has achieved because of this.
He really enjoyed sport which I encouraged him to take part in. He tried a few different sports; Tennis,football,badminton. He didn't stick to these though as found fitness was a problem. About 3 years ago he saw snooker on the TV and asked if he could have a go.I said yes and took him to a local club and he fell in love with the sport. He became almost addicted to the sport and improved quickly. We entered in a team league and in his first season won most games out of 56 adults which was a good achievement.
Snooker has helped Aaron with his confidence and social skills and taught him discipline and dedication. He is ambassador at the academy for functional snooker which is aimed at getting youths to play snooker and improve Maths and English. He is entering all the junior tournaments this year which involves a lot of traveling. We are looking for a sponsor to as Aaron wants to take up the sport professionally when he is older.
The staff and coaches and all the people who attend the academy have really helped Aaron he feels really safe there and because of this his confidence has grown. We would recommend any youngsters of age or disability to take part in snooker. It helps in all aspects of life. Anyone interested please contact the South West Snooker Academy, they are very helpful.
Here's a photo of Aaron with his coach Andrew Norman.
I hope Aaron's story encourages families to encourage youngsters with 22q Deletion /DiGeorge Syndrome to take up sport and realise the future can be bright for youngsters too. If you want to follow Aarons succcess we will post all results on twitter account snookerman2013.
June 2015 UpdateA photo of Aaron.
We went to Newbury last night and saw Ken Doherty in an exhibition he was fantastic he gave aaron a frame
Aaron was very nervous playing as in front of audience to aaron lost 37 - 66. It was great night.