Stories

Scott’s Story

The Beginning Scott was born on August 22, 1995.   He emerged with 10 fingers, and 10 toes, along with an outstanding APGAR score. As new parents, we thought we could finally take a breath.  All went well, he’s “normal.”  Since Scott was our first child, we really didn’t have any prior history with typical child […]

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Barrett’s Story

I still have yet to meet another mom who found out like I did. I’m sure there are some but I haven’t met them. When I was six months pregnant, I found out through an ultra-sound and then through an amniocentesis that I would be giving birth to a son with Down syndrome. Needless to […]

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Chris’s Story

My name is Chris Wagner, I am turning 25 years old on August 24th. I am a Foothill high school graduate who’s been going from place to place trying to find work or find an education that will help me down the road, but I have been unable to find work. It’s been five years […]

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Johnny’s Story

I never imagined that a child of mine could be different or challenged. It was never part of the plan. I always had a plan it seemed. And for the most part, everything came to pass as I saw it would..until it didn’t. I minimized Johnny’s lack of verbal development or even lack of social […]

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Briana’s Story

“She’ll never talk—at least not be capable of conversations; she’ll never go to a regular school—unless it’s in a highly restrictive special education environment, and she’ll never be able to share a bedroom with her sister. She’ll be much too disruptive.” Did I just hear correctly? Did this very prominent doctor—a highly-respected physician in his […]

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Robbie & Andrew’s Story

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been treated like the older of two siblings, even though I’m two years younger than my brother Andrew. This is because he has XXYY syndrome, a rare condition where a boy is born with an extra set of chromosomes, resulting in medical and behavioral difficulties. It is […]

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Charles’ Story

You may have seen my brother Charles walking around Pleasanton with a smile on his face.  He walks everywhere because he can’t drive but he loves going places.   He is a happy, easy-going guy who loves to watch sports and take my dog on walks. Charles was born in 1969 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  My […]

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Emily’s Story

It’s hard to know where to start when telling Emily’s story. We don’t often have a chance to step back and reflect on our journey of raising a child with special needs. After reflecting for a while, I have come to the conclusion that Emily’s Story, our family story, is one that ultimately leaves me […]

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Bruce’s Story

Who would have known that a young boy, adopted at the age of three would rally a family and open new doors to life? When I was 10 years old, my parents sat my brother and I down and asked us if we wanted a baby brother named Bruce. Of course, we said. We were […]

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Audrey’s Story

Where to start? I feel like this is one of those times when someone asks you to talk about yourself a little, and you wonder, “Do I tell them that I like cats and be done with it? Do they want me to tell my life story?” Again, where to start? Well, my name is […]

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Joshua’s story

Sports and team sports of all types, is what drives my grandson, Joshua, from one day to the next. He checks on team scores and standings the minute he gets up and it is the last thing he does before he goes to bed, sometimes sneaking a look during the night. He knows team players […]

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Ryan’s Story

A Day With Autism in the House Our 12 year old son, Ryan is obsessed with videos and on this day, he is obsessed with Penguins of Madagascar and not just any Penguins of Madagascar. He is obsessed with one episode titled “The Lost Treasure of the Golden Squirrel”. Seems simple enough, considering just about […]

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Lucas’ Story

From all outward appearances, our son Lucas is a normal seventeen-year-old young man. Most people don’t recognize him as being disabled until they see him acting inappropriately. Lucas has Fragile-X Syndrome, the most common inherited cause of autism and intellectual disabilities. The cause: one gene. This gene, called FMR1, shuts down and fails to produce […]

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Connor’s Story

Connor was our second child – another boy. We had dreams of our two sons playing together, sharing toys and clothes and being the best of brothers. But as time went on, we noticed that Connor wasn’t picking up language like he should. Lots of people, including our pediatrician, said don’t worry – it’s probably […]

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Sweet and Bittersweet

Sweet and Bittersweet It’s that time of year again. The school year is ending, the weather is getting warmer, and eager graduates are getting ready for their big day. This year is a special year, as all of the little cutie pies that Andrew started school with in 2002 are graduating from high school. It […]

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Corey’s Story

Our family has been blessed with many things including our son Corey, the third and youngest of our sons. While after 2 boys we were hoping for a daughter, what we really wanted was a healthy baby. Corey was the first child I was able to stay home and care for versus going back to […]

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Shane & Joe’s Story

Shane & Joe’s Story     I remember vividly our drive to the neurologist with our 12 month old son, Shane, in the back seat. We had been referred by his pediatrician due to the fact he was not walking or crawling yet. Friends had encouraged us with statements such as, “He’s a boy, they develop slower,” […]

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Andrew’s Story

Andrew’s Story (Well, the first 17 years of it!) Andrew was born in February 1997. Our first year was bliss. He never cried, slept through the night very early, and was never difficult. After that first year, life took a turn. Andrew had febrile seizures, starting at 12 months old and ending at 6 years […]

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Spencer’s Story

Spencer’s Story – The First Day of the Rest of Your Life I am a father of a special needs son who became an adult in June. An adult by government definition is 22. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) mandates a free and appropriate education for special needs individuals through age 22. While we […]

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Dean’s Story

Our first child Dean Christopher was born on August 30, 1994 after many exciting weeks of waiting, planning and anticipating.  He arrived two weeks late and came by emergency C-section.  He was beautiful and had a head of curly hair.  Since we were new parents, we had no previous experience with babies and so we just blissfully […]

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Taylor’s Story

December 16, 1995 marked a special day for my husband and me. It was the birth of our first son, John Taylor Queenan, who we called Taylor.  A happy couple now became a family.  We had dreams of a perfect and happy life for our son.  Taylor met the typical developmental milestones. But at the […]

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Jake’s Story

Jacob and our story To understand why we so desperately need such a community, it’s best to hear a personal story.  This is the story of my son, Jacob, and our family. I’ll never forget the day Jake was born, about 6 weeks earlier than his due date. I remember being overcome with emotion as […]

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Robby’s Story

Why Sunflower Hill? I am involved with a new non profit (501c3) called Sunflower Hill. Our goal is to create a sustainable permanent residence/community for individuals with Autism and other developmental delays.  I’ve been asked by a few friends why we created this organization and why Sunflower Hill is needed… And to appreciate that…it’s probably important […]

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