Exceptional Blog is a collaboration of blogs written by our amazing community. Please visit throughout the week to read posts for you by people who can relate with you. We have been fortunate enough to partner with a diverse group of people who may not all be professional writers but they all have fantastic stories to tell.

by Karen Warfle

No, I didn’t have a cold or laryngitis. I didn’t suffer a traumatic accident. I lost my ability to speak up for myself. After 20 years of advocating for my son, I found I didn’t know how to advocate for me. When my son graduated from homeschool and my daughter graduated from college – in the same weekend – I was ready to be a “retired” homeschool mom. I

by LisaMarie Bernardo

We all know that siblings can fight, argue and irritate each other. It can make for a very chaotic household environment. I find this even more challenging especially because my son struggles with a disability. I have tried for years to get my kids to get along but have yet to succeed. However, I have now realized that I can do something within myself to change my reaction to

by Amanda Buck

Motherhood is filled with cliché sayings. From the moment we reach a certain age and find ourselves in a steady long-term relationship, society suddenly decides that we have reached the mystical baby-making stage and immediately unhelpful hints, tips and “advice” come pouring in. All at once anyone and everyone, from our closest friends and family to the creepy neighbor down the street, have something to say. In the beginning

by Brandy Pavia

Imagine having a child, a beautiful, perfect-in-your-eyes, child. A child that may not hit all of their developmental milestones at the suggested, “age-appropriate” time, but still, your perfect child, nonetheless. You start to notice as time goes by that your perfect child has a different way of viewing and navigating the world than other kids their age, and you make it your mission to provide the

By Mary Ellen Bogucki

Often times you hear the terms high functioning, low functioning, mild, moderate or severe when people talk about the degrees of severity with Autism. We too, have heard these terms used when describing our daughter, Bree. Unfortunately, these terms can cause even more misunderstanding of the disorder, as people tend to form their own opinion of what they think the term

by: Colleen Berlingieri

My son Geordi has a speech disorder that is annoying, heartbreaking and funny at the same time. My patience wears thin when I listen to him s-l-o-w-l-y work through what he is trying to say.  Other times, my heart goes out to him as he struggles to express his feelings.  But mostly he simply cracks me up with some of the stuff that comes

by Amanda Buck

When someone learns for the first time that my 4-year-old daughter has a rare disease called cystinosis, their face will usually morph from happy and pleasant into one of concern and pity. While I appreciate their compassion and willingness to express their condolences, sometimes I find myself annoyed by their reaction. Particularly when they don’t know just how amazing she is. My little girl is full of spunk,

by Tulika Prasad

I stood in the middle of my son’s classroom , watching all his classmates confident and excited, dressed as their favorite people from history. There were scientists, Presidents, Baseball players, Civil rights activists and many more. They waited at their seats until one of the parents “activated” them for them to start their speech. I then looked at my son – sitting in the farthest corner of the room,

by Jim Turk

Remember in the Empire Strikes Back when Luke decides to use his harpoon to tie up the legs of those evil walking robot things to slow them down? He didn’t “defeat” them but he DID save the rebel force. It was a real breakthrough. …And the other day I had one of my own. Now, I’m no Jedi Master (even though I sometimes think of myself as one –

by Lynne Pearson

When Leila was four years old she must have decided that one younger brother simply was not enough and so she confidently asked me to provide her with a set of twin siblings, a boy and a girl. I smiled at my young daughter in the knowledge that Nick and I were hoping to have a third child and said,  “I’ll see what I can do.”. A few