World Down Syndrome Day
July 19, 2017

Learning to Fly and the Lessons That Followed

Joy is the emotion I feel when I look at this photo. The joy of having learned to fly despite and as a result of the challenges that came our way. Life is like that, a series of challenges that we must learn to overcome.
Recently I published the book When I Ordered You, about the lessons I have learned from the challenges. It could be classified as a children’s book, but the message goes so much deeper. This book is about the journey with my son, a fantastic young man who happens to have Down Syndrome.
When I first learned that my son would be born with Down Syndrome, I mourned the loss of the son I was ‘supposed’ to have. While the professionals had the best intentions, all I initially heard were the many challenges we would face, the things we would give up, the struggles we would experience. There have been challenges along the way, but everyone has challenges in life.
My mourning soon turned the corner when I had a baby in my arms. I learned he was mostly like any other baby. As he grew, there were many therapies to help him progress, obstacles to overcome but overcome he did and then we did. My son has now accomplished so much of what the experts told me he would never do. He refused to believe what they said about him. He refused to give up. Now, he reads, runs, plays basketball, volunteers in his community and works a job he loves. He is a light in my life. He is my teacher.
All of us have lessons to learn in this lifetime. Some of the lessons he has taught me were that I don’t have to be like everyone else to have value, that being a good friend is a great accomplishment, that failing is just another method of learning and that courage comes from never giving up on your dreams. From him, I have learned to see the gifts in the challenges.
If you would like to hear more about the story and the book, please check out my latest interview with David Warren and Sharon Ingles of The Roadshow. May you too find the courage to fly!
Thank you so much to The Roadshow, David Warren, and Sharon Ingles for inviting me to be their guest and to speak about my latest book, When I Ordered You. The Spanish version, Cuando Te Pedi is now available on Amazon and other online retailers. Here is the link if you would like to hear the interview. Thanks for listening. http://www.deborahlovebradshaw.com/speaking/