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March 30, 2018 Beautifully Different, Children 0

Beautifully Different – Evan

Beautifully Different

A Project Celebrating Differences and Triumphs

Evan is Beautifully Different

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Meet Evan. One of the sweetest, handsomest, most amazing kids I have met! Shortly after Evan turned 3, he was diagnosed with Moderate Autism Spectrum Disorder.  Children with Moderate Autism Spectrum Disorder can communicate verbally, but not at their age level. Though Evan’s language skills are compromised, he can use words to communicate his needs, wants, etc very well! You can often hear him Stimming and scripting in order to self regulate. He likes to visually, vocally and physically stim as it helps him cope with his environment. (The term “stimming” is short for self-stimulatory behavior and is sometimes also called “stereotypical” behavior. In a person with autism, stimming usually refers to specific behaviors that include hand- flapping, rocking, spinning, or repetition of words and phrases.)

Evan has an amazing supportive team and fantastic Special Needs teacher. He also receives Occupational, Speech, Feeding, and Behavioral therapy. Evan struggles in areas of developmental domains which include: feeding, dressing, small/large motor skills, speech, communication and sensory processing. His day typically includes visual schedules. Evan fears new places and change, even the smallest change in schedule can result in severe anxiety.

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Evan is More than Autism!

Evan loves jumping on his trampoline, swinging in his therapy swing, going to the park, and snuggling! He loves the movie Monsters Inc. and snacking on popcorn. Evan is surrounded by his family, friends, and teachers who love him dearly and see beyond the diagnosis. Evan is a very gentle, loving, and affectionate individual. He loves attention and hugs! (I even got a hug before he left the studio!) His Mom says he has has taught them more about the world than anyone else, and he brings such joy to them! Even has been through a lot in his short 7 years, he has persevered though all of it. He is strong, he is determined, and he is tenacious!

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For more information about the Beautifully Different project and how you can participate, click here. To follow me on Facebook click here!


March 23, 2018 Beautifully Different, Children 0

Beautifully Different – Wyatt

Beautifully Different

A Project Celebrating Differences and Triumphs

Wyatt is Beautifully Different

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How unbelievably adorable is Wyatt!? This spunky and sweet little 2 year old boy was born with a Bilateral Cleft Lip and Cleft Palate. One in about 700 births have the chance of being born with a cleft lip or palate. Wyatt’s was a little more severe than others because he had a bilateral cleft. A bilateral cleft lip/palate is more severe because it affects both sides of the mouth. He has had two surgeries so far, first one was his lip repair and rhinoplasty, he seized twice and had respiratory failure and coded. Wyatt intubated for almost 2 days because as couldn’t breathe on his own. He was in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit for 10 days. Wyatt to be fed with a syringe for 6 weeks. His 2nd surgery was at 18 months, he had his palate repair and it was successful! He was only in the hospital for 2 days for recovery. Wyatt is Beautifully Different!

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 Wyatt is the sweetest little boy, with all that he has gone through he doesn’t let that define him. According to his mother he is mamma’s boy through and through! As a family, they have been through so much together. Overcoming your difference and embracing your uniqueness has a way of bonding you and your loved ones more than anyone could know. I could see the complete and unwavering love Wyatt has for his Mom, every time he looked her! Wyatt’s Mom even got a custom tattoo in his honor! I am so grateful to have met Wyatt and I am honored to share is story!

Wyatt is a warrior!

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If you would like some more information about the Beautifully Different project and how you can participate, click here.


Beautifully Different – Maddelin

Beautifully Different

A Project Celebrating Differences and Triumphs

Maddelin is Beautifully Different

Today we have the incredible, resilient, sassy Maddelin! Maddelin is an amazing little girl, who has been through more in her short 8 years than most of us will go through in our entire lifetime. When she first came in to the studio, she seemed a little shy. I quickly learned that was FAR from the case! She is outgoing, sweet, and so incredibly adorable! Maddelin’s story is a little different from most of my Beautifully Different kids, because she was born perfectly healthy. At the age of 15 months, she suffered a terrible freak accident which resulted in a traumatic brain injury. The doctors didn’t believe she would make it through the first 24 hours. They could give her family no insight on what would happen to her.

This girl is a Fighter

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Though Maddelin cannot stand or walk unassisted, has paresis of her right arm and has learning disabilities caused from the brain injury she has an unbelievably amazing attitude and spirit. Even though she cannot get around by herself, get dressed, cook or serve herself a meal, shower, or play and interact like other kids. However, she has learned to adapt to get what she wants. Her family has also learned to adapt to fulfill her needs and make sure she is always included. Maddelin’s Mom even made a low drawer in the kitchen specifically for kids dishes so she can get her own plates, silverware and cups. Her bed has been lowered without the box spring so she can get on and off by herself.

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Maddelin is your typical 8 year old girl!

While Maddelin has her disabilities, her family does everything in their power to make sure she has every opportunity that any other little girl her age has. She cannot walk without her walker, but she’s given every opportunity to use it as much as she wants to get around. She’s enrolled in a regular public school, takes swimming lessons weekly and is on the swim team. She also rides and shows horses, is involved with brownies, and attends any other functions a little girl her age does. Maddelin isn’t treated differently and she doesn’t know she’s different. She is a happy, bubbly, outgoing little girl that can put a smile on anyone’s face when she meets them. Something that really touched me is that her Mom said that through their journey Maddelin has made her a better mother. She has taught her things that she never would’ve learned had she not been hurt. Maddelin has gone through so much and triumphed over it all, with a smile on her face nonetheless.

She truly is a miracle.

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For more information about the Beautifully Different project and how you can participate, click here.


Beautifully Different – Tyler

Beautifully Different

A Project Celebrating Differences and Triumphs

Tyler is Beautifully Different

I am so excited to introduce this amazing little guy!!! Meet Tyler- super sweet, smart, and funny 6.5 year old Tyler. Tyler has autism, ADHD and a speech/language disorder. He also struggles with anxiety and sensory processing issues but he doesn’t let any of that stand in the way of being a typical 6 year old boy. Tyler is definitely Beautifully Different! he never lets his labels define or inhibit him.

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To just look at Tyler, he seems like a pretty typical kid. He has become very good at adapting his differences to “fit in” with others. Tyler’s biggest challenge is with communication which mostly consists of echolalia – bits and pieces of things he’s heard elsewhere spliced together in an attempt to fit in to a conversation.

Tyler is the epitome of Joy

Tyler is a very active little guy! In addition to school he loves to do Yoga (and he’s pretty awesome at it!) he loves to play chase games like tag, and he LOVES to perform. He was the star of the show at his winter concert at school and loves to sing and dance for his family at home. His Mom says she can definitely see him starring in many plays when he gets bigger!

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Tyler is Smart

Tyler also has an exceptional memory. He learned his alphabet and how to spell his first and last name before he was 3 years old. Even though he is now learning how to read, he has had every book in his house memorized for years (and he has a LOT of books!) Tyler used to “read” his Mom his Thomas the train stories when he was 3 years old. He has entire movies and songs memorized. This definitely plays well with his echolalia because he has a large memory bank of phrases to pull from when trying to converse with people.

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 For more information about the Beautifully Different project and how you can participate, click here.