Stories

Spooky Duke Race 2017

Rotary Essay By: Erin Ward In the Rotary essay, we are asked to think about four questions: “Is it the truth?” “Is it fair to all concerned?” “Will it build goodwill and better friendships?” and “Is it beneficial to all?” I looked at these questions with my personal experience of disability.    In our society today, how we look at each other is important. Disability is a big thing.  Some people think that because someone has a disability that they are not as good as the next...
    Raising children with special needs can be challenging at times. Many times I question myself on how to properly meet my children’s emotional, behavioral, and special physical needs. The Parent to Parent FSN-HC support group that I attend weekly helps me with this. They are resourceful, considerate, and always pointing me in the right direction. I feel that having good solid support for my family is a major key in having success in raising my children. Parents need support from...
The Run for Holland 5K was organized by Adam and Brooke Burleson to raise awareness for parents who have had or are having a child born with a physical or mental disability. It developed out of the couple’s desire to educate others after a genetic test discovered that the baby they would be having had a high chance of having Down syndrome. Support from those around them led them to embracing their child, Holland, as a gift from God. Their 5K and 1 mile fun run was held on April 26th at...
What Defines Smart? ~A Sister's Perspective           Two things that are very important to me are education and equal rights. I have always liked learning new things and putting what I learn to use. My main motivation for coming to college was that I would be able to learn more and have more varied experiences. I think programs for those of higher intelligence are vital in allowing them to reach their full potential. I have always been in such programs and it has...
~Embracing The Journey~ written by Janessa E. Shelton   Spring is finally here! It's that time of year that rolls around and I find myself wondering where the time has flown off to?! Springtime means celebrating the births of my daughters, as they were born in April and early June. Now after a decade, both of them have finally reached what my youngest daughter proudly refers to as the "double digits" It does not seem possible, and yet it is! There is so much truth to the Latin...
Providing Comfort When a Child Dies By: Helen Baldwin In 1997, our two-month old baby, Jeffrey, was diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a neuromuscular/motor neuron disease and leading genetic killer of children under two. He died 3-1/2 months later, but our assignment was hardly over. Regardless of circumstances, grief is excruciating at best. The only guarantee is its unpredictability and propensity for making one wonder if itʼs possible to escape the abyss of heart-shredding...
Never Give Up!!         Zach was diagnosed with autism with mild mental retardation back in 1989.  He was 3 at the time we received our news.  There was little known about autism or how to treat it.  Our journey started with Zach at the age of 1.  I knew something was wrong but all the doctors did tell me that he was a boy and that boys really do develop later.  But I knew they were wrong.  Day after day we watched him gesture at...
It Takes A Village “It takes a village” is the old saying about raising a child. This can't be more true than when raising a child with special needs. Being able to talk with someone who understands the trials and tribulations can help a parent with both their mental and physical state immensely. But when someone understands the celebrations of goals your child achieves, no matter how small it may seem, it means so much more. Our family found this out first hand when our son was born a little...
Jessie's Story
By: Dayne Alexander When she was very young, Jessie Jackson developed in much the same way as others her age. When she was five years old, Jessie could climb trees and talk with a bit of a stutter. By first grade, she had lost most of her speech. By age nineteen she had lost most of her spoken voice; she could say around one-hundred words. Today, a year later, Jessie can only say the word "mom". She uses a wheelchair to get around and a speaking device to help her communicate with those around...
Ben's Story
By Ben's Family "We'll just have to love him more!" was my five-year-old's response to my explanation of what having Down syndrome would mean for her new baby brother. Lacey has never considered what he couldn't do; only what he could do. If anyone ever mentions a weakness or a lack of a skill, she immediately comes back with "but he can......" She has always been his most dedicated teacher and advocate, helping him learn as much as he can. She even taught him to swim. When he started school,...

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