Now, to meet Stephanie. Where to begin? I guess for starters you should know that she and I each take turns being the “evil twin.” Some people when they meet learn to finish each other’s sentences. Stephanie and I, instead, start each other’s sentences, and someday when we meet in real life, we’ll probably never finish a sentence between us. She’s one smart cookie that’s pushed by love to go out and change the world. But that, you will shortly see for yourself. Here we go!
(2,6) Tell us about Josh’s biggest win
I would say that Josh’s biggest win happened when he was chosen to present at the World Down Syndrome Congress in Vancouver, BC. It was a win-win. He got the self-esteem and excitement from traveling three-days cross country Toronto, to Vancouver in a Greyhound bus, telling a captive audience about his college friends and all the work he did, and he got to spend some guy time with one of the students when they went to see Alice Cooper in concert. It was also a win for emancipatory research – the project was a huge success.
The young, soon-to-be-teachers who got to know and appreciate someone with Down syndrome first-hand before they were assigned to their first class won invaluable experience. And everyone involved in the project, including the professor who originally doubted that inclusion at the university level could be done well, mom who worried about letting go so much, and the conference participants who got their first glimpse of modified curriculum in a typical university class, all benefited from the opportunity to change their way of thinking towards a more inclusive future.
(5,1) Your thoughts on the Fifty Yard Line –
The fifty yard line actually brings up quite painful images. Josh is 28 years old now. For most people that’s not old, or even middle-aged. For Josh, depending on which statistics you believe, it could be either. Since one research study says that people of color who have Down syndrome are only expected to live to the age of 30, we could be running out of time together. The life expectancy of Caucasians who have Ds is now reportedly around 60, with some people reaching higher. Since Josh’s parentage is also 50/50, where does that leave him? Or me? We simply don’t know.
(6,1) From this one word prompt either write or send a picture reply: Push.
(2, 1) Tell us about one time when your child beat the odds
Josh beat the odds when he was born without any major health issues that are associated with Down syndrome.
From this one word prompt either write or send a picture reply: House wins
DONE with school! BIG win for “the house.”
Now I’m sure you want more. Well, Steph is pretty easy to find whatever your network of choice here:
|The Road We’ve Shared||Walkersvillemom|
|Twitter @RoadWeveShared||Twitter @Walkersvillemom|
|Parents and caregivers of adults who have Down syndrome||Family, friends, and Down syndrome community|
Well, what is left to say, except that I am a HUGE fan of Stephanie’s. She is a game changer, and anyone who wants a breath of fresh air just needs to spend a little time in the Road We’ve Shared. Thing is, you can hear her laughing across the internet, while asking the hard questions. Stephanie is inspiring. Sometimes you just can’t thank people enough. Stephanie is one of those people. She is all about others in everything she does. God gave her Josh for a reason. Together they are changing our little DS corner of the world.