21 Stories: Meet the heart-melting Matthew sheppard

The Sheppard family shares the heart warming story of the joy their smiley little boy has brought their family in the short 4 years of his life:

“Our incredible 4-year-old, Matthew Caleb Sheppard, was born at home in the wee hours on May 16, 2012. With the help of two wonderful midwives, Matthew arrived without complication. He was rather blue, however, and this was our first sign of a heart issue. The midwife put Matthew on my chest and I knew right away that he had Down syndrome. What I didn’t know was how much joy – I mean pure joy – that this little being would bring me, my husband, the entire family, and so many others.

Admittedly, the days and perhaps months that followed were difficult. I knew very little about what it means to be born with Down syndrome. I wondered, would he be accepted by others? Is it possible for him to one day ride a bike? Fall in love and get married? Hold a meaningful job? I didn’t know what life would bring him or us as a family. But I do now… Joy! There are few people that make me smile as brightly, laugh as deeply, cheer as loudly, and love as wholeheartedly as Matthew. “

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