Breaking Free My Life


Breaking Free

Documentary series. This programme follows Ruben and Nicole, two 12-year-old children who have a dream and won't let having Down's syndrome stand in the way of fulfilling it.


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Transcript


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Hello, I'm Ruben and I'm 12 years old.

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I dream of being a world champion swimmer.

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And Nicole wants to go out with her boyfriend James.

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'This is our summer. Can we reach our goals?'

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I'm the champion!

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-Face our fears?

-Can you do any better?

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And prove that we can do things on our own?

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Oh, no way!

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This is us breaking free!

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Take your marks... Go!

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Today, I'm training hard with my coach Gemma.

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I want to be a member of Team GB!

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Gemma needs me to swim two lengths in 50 seconds.

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That's proper hard!

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If I do that, I have a real chance of winning my race tomorrow.

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If we're going to get those times down to be in the GB team,

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we need to work a little bit harder.

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Are we ready? Take your marks...

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Go!

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I have Down's syndrome. I compete against other people like me.

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This is my room. Full of medals!

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I go swimming in a gala, to get more trophies and medals.

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My coach is called Gemma Whipley

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and it's good to teach me lots of times so I can focus my mind.

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He's definitely a potential Great Britain swimmer.

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There's no swimmers swimming in his age bracket with Down's syndrome

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so he's swimming against all the big swimmers

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and he's still coming out with medals.

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Having Down's syndrome means I have an extra chromosome.

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It makes my face a bit different,

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my hands a bit different

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and my feet.

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My body has to work harder to make muscles and burn fat.

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51, that's one second off.

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I did it in 51 seconds!

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I still need a little bit faster for the actual race.

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Shall we go and do one more? Come on then, let's go!

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My friend Nicole is out shopping with her mum

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and best friend Charlotte.

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-You don't want to wear what your mum wears, do you?

-No!

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They are looking for an outfit for Nicole's new drama class.

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You've got to wait for me. Don't go too far away, OK?

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Nicole's mum always worries when she's out.

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But Nicole wants her mum to give her some space.

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-Really? I don't think so, honey.

-Yes.

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It's too big. The store's too big.

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Mum...

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'When we go out, I'm on guard all the time.

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'You just want to protect your child as much as possible.'

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-Oh, no way.

-Why, what's wrong with that?

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'I think she just wants to turn into a mini-teen.'

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Instead of having a mother hanging around her all the time.

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Yeah, leave the shoes. We're ready.

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Off we go!

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Nicole's mum is letting her

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join a week-long drama club all by herself.

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-Starmakers.

-Starmakers, that's right.

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How old are you, m'love?

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-I'm 12.

-12, OK.

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It's going to be a really good week.

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Nicole is doing drama, dance and singing!

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-Nicole!

-Lovely.

-ALL:

-Nicole!

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-Splat!

-Splat!

-Splat!

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At the end of the day

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she will perform in front of the whole class.

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Nicole is about to act in front of her new friends.

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I'm not her dog!

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She's pretending to be a strict dog owner.

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Excuse me, Nicole, is this really your dog?

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Yeah!

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I'm not, I'm her sister!

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Help me!

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Nicole's got a part in the drama group's main performance

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at the end of the week.

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Thank you very much!

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I'm excited to get to the races

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but my competitors are much older than me.

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And the person I have to impress today is Gordon.

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I am really nervous before I swim

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and today the whole Team GB squad are there.

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I'm going to walk around with you

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and we are going straight over to lane 1.

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I'm ready for my first race. Here I go!

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But things don't quite go as I want them to.

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If you would like to clear the water, please, guys.

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I came fourth. That's a disaster!

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Out of six you came number four. It was very, very good!

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Look at Gemma.

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'I get frustrated when my body doesn't do what I want it to do.

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'I've got to turn things around soon, or I'll never make the team.'

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After drama school, Nicole takes some time out for boyfriend James.

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-Hello, James.

-Hi, Nicole.

-Come in.

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James is 12 and they have known each other since they were two.

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And now they want to go out without Mum.

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OK. Cool.

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-Mum?

-Mm?

-I really, really want to have a date with my boyfriend.

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-Just you and James, or with mummies, too?

-Just me and James.

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Mummy's going to have to think about it, Nicole.

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-Really?

-Yeah.

-OK.

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That didn't go as well as Nicole hoped it would.

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I'm getting over my setback earlier.

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I am going to give the next race my all.

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And this is my last chance to impress Gordon.

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-Lane four, Ruben Rueter.

-This is a race I have to win.

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Come on, Ruben!

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Yes, I've done it!

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First and fourth. And I'm pretty surprised myself.

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So...so I went and got a personal best. I got a medal.

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Well done.

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I may have won, but is it enough to make the trial?

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I go to see Gordon to get the news.

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Right, Rubes. Looking at how well you've done today,

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we can get you to train with the GB team.

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-Is that something you want to do?

-Very! Very much!

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'Yes, I've done it!'

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So, how is Nicole getting on as the day of her show arrives?

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It's square, like that crossbeam.

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She has been practising her lines a lot.

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Sit down, be quiet or I'll put you in the oven!

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James can't wait to see his Nicole on stage.

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Are you ready?

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Oh, yeah! SHE GIGGLES

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All right, guys? Ready for show time?

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-CHEERING

-Have fun, guys. Whoo! Yeah!

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APPLAUSE

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Nicole is up next.

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Will she remember her lines?

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Music, and off you go.

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Sit down, be quiet. Or I'll put you in the oven.

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She has!

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Nicole has achieved her dreams.

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-Did you know that you made me cry?

-Yeah.

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You did, did you see Mummy was crying?

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I was, because I was so proud of you.

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'She rocked it, and you think, she can do that

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'so we need to allow her to be going on a date.'

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How about it being a yes from Mummy,

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because you just spent a week

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being a really big, very grown-up young lady. Would that be good?

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-Yes, Mum.

-What about you?

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-Yes, why not?

-Yeah? Makes you happy?

-Yeah, happy.

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Cool. Come on, big hug, then.

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Now is my own big day. I'm in Glasgow.

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-Ready?

-Ready. Go.

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We've been training for two hours.

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OK, Ollie, Andy, on the blocks.

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It all comes down to this race.

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Ready?

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Go!

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Good job. Jump out. We'll have to have a look at the times,

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see what it says on the bit of paper and I'll let you know later.

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I worked so hard.

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If I swim fast enough,

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I'll have made it into the Down's syndrome GB squad.

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Hello, Rubes. I've spoken to the coaches,

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we've looked at the times you swum in those races.

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Now, how would you like to be part of the squad?

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-Yes, please!

-Yeah?

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-So, Ruben, Team GB.

-Yes!

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'It's all been worth it. I'm going to be a champion!'

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Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah!

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Now Nicole gets to go out with James.

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This is where you guys are going,

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for your first date. I'm not scared.

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At all. I'm not worried. Go and have fun.

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What can I get for you?

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The pasta, gluten-free. Lovely.

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-Thank you!

-You're welcome. Buon appetito.

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'This summer, she seems to have grown into this lovely,'

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-confident young lady.

-There we go, guys, there's the bill for you.

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-Thank you.

-You're welcome.

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She seems to have just taken it in her stride and loved every minute.

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It has been a brilliant summer.

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I'm a champion.

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And Nicole is out on the town.

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And we can do things all on our own.

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We are awesome!

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Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

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Ruben and Nicole are two very different 12-year-old children, with one very big thing in common. They both have a dream and they won't let anything stand in the way of it - especially Down's syndrome.

We follow these two extraordinary children over the summer as they take their first steps to independence, after having been protected by their families since birth.


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