The R-Word


Our daughter is a teacher.


A Special teacher!

And she is one of the many thousands who are called to a vocation of teaching

Special individuals


who deal with Intellectual Disabilities.

But she (and others like her) remind us they are more appropriately considered:



Abilities that demand our RESPECT!

The Special Olympics community has a beautiful campaign which reminds the world of this Special gift & have developed a campaign to better educate us all!

“The R-Word Campaign” is one our family, and thousands of others like us, are happy to support!

Image 6-20-18 at 11.46 AM

Each year we have the opportunity to recommit when we travel to Fairfax, Virginia to witness a wonderful event our daughter orchestrated for her high-school community.


Fan Quest is a beautiful program which affords Special-needs students the opportunity to compete in the athletic realm with their peers. We have proudly watched from when our daughter first took this fledgling program to her high-school in Virginia, until just recently…..

and oh my, has it grown!! 

Not only in size, (both in participation & attendance,) but in the acceptance of each individual’s ABILITIES!  

As by-standers, we have humbly witnessed an entire change in the culture of a school!


Last year; however, our daughter & son-in-law moved back to our hometown and although we celebrated this return with great glee; leaving this high-school, her administrators, colleagues, and especially her Special students was a painful feat.  When Fan Quest rolled around this past February they invited her back for a Special tribute to honor the work she began for them – while Cuppycake & I watched from afar with abounding hearts.


Since moving back home a local high-school was fortunate enough to bring her on staff.  She has done a marvelous job laying the foundation for another new program, which I am certain will bring about the same wonderful awareness which occurred in her former teaching position.  I cannot tell you how excited I am for this school, because I already know the gift that awaits them!

A Special gift…for ALL who partake.

Whether athlete,

or in assistance,

or peer.


we are all Special fans!

And partakers in the one great cause…

of “Spreading the word to end The Word!”

For the reason that language affects the attitude

and attitude affects the action!

So no matter where you reside, please won’t you join in!

Make your pledge to only use Respectful, people-first language!

hugs n’ blessings to all the POSITIVE teachers who teach us the POSITIVE in life!

6 thoughts on “The R-Word

  1. Beautiful Dawn!!!
    For years my classroom was next door to our Speical Ed class—many of these kids had physical handicaps as well as learning.
    My kids (reg ed) would often invite them over in order to “teach” them art…the stuff we were doing as they wanted them to be able to get a taste of our class routine and lessons.
    My kids, my teenage students would often surprise me with their level of compassion.
    Once my kids noticed that the Special ed kids were out sharing in the riding of a bike.
    There were about 10 kids with one bike so they were having to take turns.
    My kids put together a school-wide bake sale in order to raise money so we could buy
    enough bikes for each kid…of which they did.
    I have a very special place in my heart for our Spec. Ed kids as well as all those who teach and work with them—
    thank you so very much for sharing!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What a beautiful example of acceptance and love! Our daughter is a strong supporter of partnership-clubs which create inclusive environments for all involved – your former students outreach of love is a strong example of the benefits from these opportunities to be in community with one another! How blessed are you to have been a witness to it all…


  2. Thank you for sharing this wonderful post. In my small town we have special programs for these special people and I have a friend who is a ‘special’ schools teacher. Your family and your life are always a source of profound inspiration to me. You are a special and beautiful person Dawn and I do thank you for sharing with wider world your life and family.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Faye…your kind words over-whelm me and come at a most needed time. The evil one is so slippery in his attempts to rail against us; but our god always manages to send His angels to minister to us. Thank you for being my angel today….


  3. What a kind tribute to the Work I get to do daily—truly a blessing. My vocational has been fulfilling day in and day out-my special angels teach me about love and acceptance each day. Love you Mom!

    Liked by 1 person

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