I am a person with a disability who is a single adoptive parent to three beautiful girls and one son. All of my kids happen to have developmental disabilities, and two are wheelchair users. We are a multi-racial family living in Colorado.
My children are aged 23, 18, 14 and 12. My 23 year old has cri du chat syndrome which causes severe to profound intellectual disabilities, multiple physical disabilities, dwarfism, and deafblindness. She now lives in her own home. My eighteen year old has moderate intellectual disabilities, excels in track, and is a busy teenager. My fourteen year old is a former micro-preemie and has cerebral palsy, short gut syndrome and a seizure disorder as a result. She is her mama’s girl and equally as stubborn. My mother’s curses about having a child that acts just like you are all coming full circle. My twelve year old has intellectual disabilities and low vision, and provides endless delights as I get to experience raising a boy in the midst of all these girls. My family loves to travel, camp, and explore the world around us. My kids are involved in sports, music and community recreational activities.
We also have two dogs, two cats and a flock of chickens from time to time. We live in Northern Colorado, in a town with fabulous schools for my kids, and a variety of community activities within walking distance. Unfortunately there is no public transportation in our semi-rural area.
I am an attorney in the disability rights field where I run the Center for Rights of Parents with Disabilities, an organization providing legal services to parents and children with disabilities involved with social services. While I primarily represent parents and children with disabilities in child protection cases, and I do ADA and Fair Housing Act cases as well.
I went to college at Whitworth College in Spokane, Washington. After college, I moved to the island of Saipan where I was a schoolteacher, teaching middle school science and social studies. I moved from Saipan to Denver, where I attended the Iliff School of Theology and earned my MDiv degree with an emphasis in Justice and Peace Studies. I worked as a youth pastor and associate pastor at a couple of different churches, and taught gifted and talented students for the University of Denver. I attended law school at the University of Denver, Sturm College of Law where I was a Chancellors Scholar. I worked at the Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition for nearly 13 years before founding the Center for Rights of Parents with Disabilities.
I am a power wheelchair user and ventilator user. I have a congenital myopathy, central core disease, that causes my physical disability. I have quadriparesis due to the myopathy, low vision as the result of Steven Johnson Syndrome, and severe hearing loss due to antibiotic ototoxicity.
I chose the name disability cubed due to the intersection of living with a disability, parenting with a disability, and parenting children with disabilities that I experience.