Hi, and thanks for visiting Downright Wonderful!...where we celebrate our “fearfully and wonderfully made” children everyday, but more importantly where we celebrate the one who made them, our perfect creator and our Lord and Savior!
My name is Kelsi. I am a wife to one and a homeschool mama to 7, two of whom happen to be rockin’ an extra chromosome.
Colt is our 6th child who surprised us when he was born with his extra chromosome in July of 2014 and Nic is our 7th child who we adopted from an orphanage in Ukraine in January 2017.
Welcome to our journey!
You might already know about my passion for sharing the beauty of my two youngest with Down syndrome if you came here by way of my Instagram page, @downrightwonderful.
When our sixth child, Colt, was diagnosed with Down syndrome shortly after his birth, his little something extra was a surprise. But it turned out to be a wonderful surprise, changing our lives and hearts forever and leading us to the adoption of our seventh child, Nic, who also happens to have an extra chromosome.
We learned that Colt was gifted with an extra chromosome shortly after his birth in July 2014, and we knew that our son was “fearfully and wonderfully made” in the image of God. There are no mistakes.
In Colt’s birth announcement we wanted to make it known that we celebrated his Down syndrome and had just as much joy with Colt as with our five others. Each of our children have all developed at their own pace, and have had their own little packages of health and behavior issues, with the only difference being that their “package” was not given a title or cute physical traits that might define their issues into a specific group.
I could carry on about Colt's smile, hugs, perseverance, love, funny faces, endless goodnight kisses, dancing, signing, his insistence on waving at strangers until he gets a wave back, and more, that add so much joy and love to our family. But, Colt has added so much more than that to our lives.
Our love for Colt opened our eyes to our fear of discomfort, disabilities, pursuit of ease, and the safe road that keep us from the joy of living a life in a deeper trust in God and a deeper love for others. We had never thought about adoption before but through our son’s birth our eyes were opened to the needs of children all around the world, and we felt a special calling to those with Down syndrome and special needs.
When we learned about Reece’s Rainbow, a ministry whose mission is to find families for orphans with Down syndrome, at our first Buddy Walk and read that in other parts of the world these children are viewed as outcasts with no ability to learn or be functional members of society, languishing in mental institutions, hidden away from the world in shame, our heart broke for these children. We saw their faces and pictured Colt being born into those circumstances. Our family knew that we must do something.
We stared at the babies on the Reece’s Rainbow web site for almost a year, saying that we will adopt “one day”. Then I saw the picture of this precious baby boy from Reece’s Rainbow on a friend’s Instagram page. He was only a few months old, abandoned to live his life in an orphanage because he had an extra chromosome.
That is when we realized that we would cross the ocean or give our lives for every single one of our children and the only thing holding us back from doing the same for a child, “our boy”, in an orphanage in Ukraine was fear and God is so much bigger then any of our fears. He is powerful and faithful and we needed to trust in Him with the details of the plans that He had laid out for our family.
Adoption was a crazy process but God did take care of every detail from the funding to the travel and every challenge that came along the way.
The world seeks the beautiful, perfect, or “normal”. They are quick to abort, mourn over or throw out anyone they deem inconvenient, less worthy or less able. And these are the very ones that God has chosen to use to free us from these worldly pursuits and teach others in ways that none of those that the world considers “great”, “beautiful”, “rich” or “famous” could ever do.
I am so thankful for what these boys teach us and the love and joy that I get to experience and share because of them daily. I hope that by sharing I can help others to see the beauty in Down syndrome, but more importantly share the message that we are ALL created in the image of God, fearfully and wonderfully made, worthy of life and the sacrificial, unconditional love that God demonstrated for us.