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Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado

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Shayleah: Special Needs Parenting 101
By Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado
Thursday, July 31, 2008

Rated "G" by the Author.

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A special little girl is the light of her mother's world.

My daughter, Shayleah Rene', is the light of my world, the apple of my eye.  I can't imagine my life without her.

My name is Trixie Rose Aggeton.  I live in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, with my husband, Raymond, and our daughters Winter Storm (eight) and our youngest, six-year-old Shayleah, who has some special needs.  (The older daughter is healthy, thank the Lord!)

Shayleah was born with Down syndrome, meaning she is mentally disabled, plus she has some accompanying characteristics of the syndrome (small bridge of nose, uptilted eyes, thicker than normal tongue and neck, round, moon-shaped face, heart murmurs, etc.).  She has been in and out of the hospital:  besides her heart issues, she also has allergies and asthma.

Despite her medical problems, Shayleah is a very happy, resourceful little girl.  One of her very favorite things to do is sing; her favorite singer is LeAnn Rimes, and she loves singing her song, "Blue".  She wants to be a country singer when she grows up.

Besides singing, Shayleah loves to draw, color, watch tv (her favorite show is "Caillou"), play with her sister, and go swimming.  She also loves therapy; to her it's more opportunity to play; it's not work.  Shayleah loves her therapists; they are among her best friends.

If people could overlook her slowness or her medical problems, they'd see a very happy, talented little girl who doesn't let life stop her.  She will do anything she sets her mind to; determination is her middle name!

It isn't easy parenting two active little girls (especially since one of them has special needs), but I think we do an okay job.  We give both Shayleah and Winter lots of love and attention, and we are trying to be the best parents we possibly can be to them.  We love our daughters very much, and we feel truly blessed in having them in our lives.

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Reviewed by Lois Christensen 8/1/2008
These children are really very smart, love music and I know they love individual therapy. It makes them feel important and they need to feel wanted. who could not love a child no matter what health problems they had. We had a cousin who had a baby who could not even walk, but he would go on picnics with us and lay on the blanket and smile and smile. That was years ago, he never did grow up,and did eventually. But he was loved very much and well taken care of.
Reviewed by Georg Mateos 8/1/2008
Any of you know that in Norway, they have a Disimilis Orchestra (translation: disimiles=different) with mostly girls and boys with Down syndrome and other ailments. People in Scandinavia as accepted them as they coul accept any other orchestra, not seeing their ailment but the virtuosity.

Reviewed by Michelle Kidwell Power In The Pen 7/31/2008
Karen Shayleah sounds like a precious little girl, we tend to see the disabilities not the hidden talents, at least society in general thank you for sharing
In Christs Love
Reviewed by Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner 7/31/2008
A beautiful write of a special little girl and her special family, who sees and loves her for whom Shayleah is. :) Well done, Karen!

(((HUGS))) and love, Karla.
Reviewed by d. k 7/31/2008
Love is the key to happiness and it is obvious that this family is very happy. When I see a child with a disability I see a face of an Angel. Who can be so genuinely happy, but these beautiful children? One can't help but feel their joy and they sometimes find themselves lingering longer than normal when being in the company of such bright children. Your heart can't help but experience a little of the joy the children possess. A great write once again my friend.

Reviewed by Rose Rideout 7/31/2008
Love is a wonderous thing that is a must for any parent espically for those who need the extra strength and guidance for a child with special needs. Thank you for sharing Kare.

Newfie Hugs are on the way, Rose
Reviewed by Felix Perry 7/31/2008
Good insight into parenting a downs syndrome child and the benefits of love.


Books by
Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado

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Body Trauma - a writer's guide to wounds and injuries by David Page

Body Trauma covers the overall organization of the US trauma system, how doctors evaluate and treat trauma victims, as well as special sections on specific injuries such as impalem..  
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The Smart Brain Train by Nina Anderson

A delightfully illustrated story that teaches children how to have a healthy brain with note to parents & teachers in the back. Great for home schooling...  
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