This week's Chicken Soup For The Soul Moment is about a boy who inspires through his participation in the Special Olympics. Ian Shepherd participates in the Special Olympics not only for himself but to help inspire and teach other athletes.
I now know there is science out there that could make a difference in the life of my son both as he grows and develops into a young man, and in his adulthood. It is truly empowering, and hopeful, to realize our efforts today can make a difference in our children's tomorrows.
During these last two years, #JusticeForEthan has evolved from the demand for answers regarding one man's death to the rallying cry focused on the need for change. Despite all that has been lost -- and it is far too much -- there is now a spotlight on where changes need to come.
Sweetie Pie was born with ten fingers, ten toes, and Down syndrome. I've never been one to wallow in the "Life is not fair" pity party, but when she was born I was confused about the unknown: Why did this happen? How do we help? What is her future? What about my daughter?
All parents want the best reassurance for their pregnancy and to protect their unborn to their greatest capability. What is imperative is that a woman understands her options concerning prenatal testing and the risks and benefits inherent in each.
The plan of the campaign is simple: to post a photo of the individual with a disability, to include the hashtag of a favorite major retailer along with the #IMREADY hashtag and to make a call for the retailer to participate.
Every parent wants their child to have a shot at the American Dream. For the parents of a child affected by a severe disability such as Down Syndrome or autism, that hope for a secure future is no less powerful.
That night the little girl cuddled in bed, not knowing or caring that she has changed so many people. But she slept peacefully without regret or worry. And she woke the next morning to share her healing hugs all over again.
I love the way she coos, and the way she smiles a goofy, mouth-wide open grin. In five days, I will be handing her over to a team of pediatric surgeons. They will cut open her chest and, provided all goes well, they will repair her heart.
There was such a spirit of joy, of connectedness and hope at the Be Beautiful, Be Yourself Fashion Show. The outpouring of love was reflected in an outpouring of support as a wonderfully executed live and lively auction brought out cheerful givers, open hearts and open pocketbooks.
I wondered if I would lay claim to those words -- not just string them together, but lay claim to their meaning. Lay claim not just to my daughter, but to her extra chromosome. Because cognitive disability was hard for me. Very, very hard.