I believe that nothing is left to chance, that coincidences don’t exist. I believe in God and wine (in that order). I believe that I have been blessed more richly than I deserve. I believe that life is beautiful, even when it is hard. I believe in going to bed with a grateful heart, and waking up the same way.

I’m a wife, a teacher, and a mother. I am passionate about human rights, civil rights, and particularly disability rights. For many years I believed my life’s calling was to teach special education. And then my daughter was born. I learned quickly how much I have still to learn about life, and that translated directly to my teaching, to how I relate to parents and families. My daughter opened up my world, restored my faith, changed my heart. And then on Christmas Day 2011, my life changed again, in a bigger way than I could ever have imagined. My son was born, 3 weeks early, with a grand surprise–2 actually. He has Down syndrome, as well as a congenital birth defect requiring multiple surgeries to repair.

I didn’t waste a minute feeling disappointed about his diagnosis. I was worried about his medical issues, scared about what the future would hold, but never disappointed that he has Down syndrome. He, along with his sister, are the light of my life. They are my greatest loves, my most profound blessings. My husband and I jumped in with both feet, hanging on to each other and our faith as we embark on this new and beautiful adventure.

It has now become my mission to share our journey so the world can see just how “normal” life with Down syndrome really is. My hope is that by sharing snippets of my family, my children, and my marriage, we can raise awareness and show the world that all life is precious and life with Down syndrome is worth living!

But wait–this isn’t just about Down syndrome. Sure, it is part of our life–a big part–but our family is much more than a diagnosis! So, welcome! And I hope you enjoy our family as much as I do!



One thought on “About

  1. Hi Stephanie! Its Tina Nelson from the FMB condo you rented. We just arrived and saw your message in our book. I got on right away to follow your blog! What a wonderful story you have here! I feel like I have known you all my life! You have 2 beautiful children! And sounds like a wonderful husband and father to boot! I have to share a story with you that happened to us just the other day at one of our favorite ice cream places here on Vanderbuilt Rd off of Bonita Beach Rd called The Royal Scoop. My husband Steve and I had just got our ice cream cones and headed out to sit on the porch. After a few minutes we saw an older man say in his late 70’s come out followed by a gentleman Id say in his 50’s. Graying hair, well dressed in nice shorts sporting a Notre Dame belt. We smiled at this man and said, hi how ya doing! He responded back very nicely and smiled at us. Got in his (I would presume his father’s) car and they drove off. I remarked to husband, Steve, how nice the gentleman was and how well he must have been cared and taken care of as he had DS! It warmed my heart to see the love he had for his father and his father for him! They both were truly blessed as your family has been with your precious son! He has such a bright future ahead of him with the love and support from you, your husband and daughter! I wished you much happiness and continued good health. We would love for your family to come back and stay with us some time….to celebrate again and this time it will be on us! So keep in touch PLEASE! We have made close contact with one of our guests who’s young son who has become a cancer survivor! THey have enjoyed an additional stay with us too!

    May God Bless you and your lovely family!

    Steve and Tina Nelson

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