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'Singing is the best': Woman with Down syndrome serenades mother in Ontario retirement home
TORONTO -- An Ontario woman living with Down syndrome is singing to her 90-year-old mother outside the window of her retirement home as way to be together during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Almost every afternoon, Jody Olm, 50, walks to visit her mother at the home in Port Colborne, Ont, and sings Barney’s ‘I Love You Song’.
“Singing is the best thing to do,” Olm told CTV News Toronto Friday. “I feel so happy and so glad that I will see her”.
Olm has been missing a lot during the pandemic. Her drama club, swimming and wrestling events have all been cancelled.
On top of that, she says she also misses volunteering at the home where her mother lives.
“I do really want a real hug and kiss with my mother and I do really miss that,” she said.
And that feeling goes both ways for Jody’s mother Freda Olm. “Sometimes it almost brings me to tears,” Freda said.
As time goes by, Freda says the renditions are helping ease the separation. The musical performances are also spreading joy to the people working at the home, and to Jody's family and friends.
“I love her and she just makes me so happy, and things haven’t been great for me so she just puts a smile on my face,” said friend Deanna Rudyk.
“Jody just loves to have any attention she can get, so it makes me feel good,” said sister Bonnie Martel.
Jody said that when she sings the song, she thinks about how her mother loves her and that she is a good mother.
“It’s a special song for her. She’s a special mother,” said Jody.
Photos from inside Freda Olm's residence were provide by Portal Village Retirement Home.