Wednesday, December 4, 2013

guest blogger: Linda Koba


Last week, as I was putting together the slideshow for Thanksgiving, I received a beautiful photo of a young woman named Stacey, and her boyfriend Miles. There was a brief description of Stacey, and it peaked my curiosity. I emailed Stacey's mom Linda, and she told me her amazing story…one of a young single woman, who fell in love with a baby with Down syndrome. And she chose to raise her in a time when babies with special needs were being placed in institutions. I asked LInda to guest blog for me today, because I so wanted you to read for yourselves her incredible story.


Please welcome Linda and Stacey...


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by Linda Koba


  I was so honored when Patti asked me to share Stacey's story.  I've been reading Patti's blog for a few years now and I think she is amazing.  Lily is just beautiful! 

 So, I first heard about Stacey when I was 21 and living at home with my parents.  I had tried college and it wasn't for me. I was engaged to a guy I'd been dating for a few years but I really wasn't sure if that was right either.  I felt like I was at a crossroads of sorts. 

 Stacey was 7 months old and living with a woman named Irma.  Irma had run a home for children with Down syndrome.  The babies would stay with her until they were old enough for a boarding school type placement.  I know this sounds awful, but remember it was 38 years ago.  Thank God we've come a long way since then. 



 Irma had retired and moved to a senior citizen development and Stacey was still with her but needed a home.  My grandmother told us about her and I felt this immediate pull toward her.  We met her and my whole family just fell in love with her.  My parents had raised 5 children at this point and didn't want to start over.  They told me if this was something I wanted to do they would help me but it was my responsibility.  The guy I was engaged to wasn't happy about it....and we broke up.  He wasn't the kind of man I wanted to be with.


 So.....Stacey came to live with us.....her crib was in my room, and I continued to work.  Stacey would sometimes go to a babysitter where she would play with other children.  It was hard but so worth it.  She started Early Intervention and she just bloomed.  Speech was always her greatest strength.  She is a real chatterbox! 










 When she was 2, I met a wonderful guy named Stan.  He accepted Stacey from the start and we were married a year later.  




We have had 3 more children..Lauren is 32, Nancy is 28 and a special education teacher and Matthew is 19.   Stacey is a our first daughter.  





Every one of our kids would tell you how having her for a sister has enriched their lives.  She is truly a beautiful soul and we love her so much. 


 Stacey started public school at 5 and learned to read that year.  She amazed everyone.













After graduation from high school she started working at Home Depot as a greeter.  She loves her job and they are wonderful to her.  










She met Myles about 8 years ago and they've been dating ever since.  They are so much in love!   She talks about him constantly.  She wants to marry him but I don't think that will ever happen.  For now she is happy planning for it. 









 Life with Stacey certainly has had some challenges but I wouldn't trade a moment of it away.  She is a tremendous blessing to our family.






  I wish you could all meet her...she is pure goodness, she doesn't know how to lie or be mean.  I cannot imagine a life without her. 




24 comments:

Becca said...

Ohmygosh, this story has me in tears. Truly the most incredible story ever. What parents would support their 21 year old daughter in adopting a baby with special needs!?! An incredible family, all around. Thank you so much for sharing this! <3 <3 <3

Mariah said...

I second Becca's comment...an incredible family all around! Such a beautiful story! makes my heart sing! :-D thank you for posting it!

Mariah said...

I second Becca's comment...an incredible family all around! Such a beautiful story! makes my heart sing! :-D thank you for posting it!

Stephanie said...

This was an awesome post. Such a great story! Patti--could you please have Linda contact me (stephanie@theidsc.org); I'd love to feature her story on the IDSC's blog.

Anna Theurer said...

Excellent guest post! A beautiful story. Thank you, Linda for sharing!

Shannon said...

Linda, just curious, why don't you think they will ever marry? Would it mess up their benefits? I have a daughter with Ds an often think about this

Lauren Koba said...

Hello, my name is Lauren. I am Linda's daughter, and Stacey sister. I am so proud to be a part of this amazing story. My mother is the most amazing and selfless woman I know. My father is my hero. What man today would take that responsibility?! I aspire to be like them everyday. Stacey has alway been my big sister. To me growing up she was just like anyone else's sister. She has never been different. No matter what kind of day I'm having she brings a smile to my face. Stacey has this innocents and love for life, and it's very contagious! Just ask anyone who has met her! This story is just a little peak into our lives, but it speaks volumes of the amount of love my family shares. I think the broadway musical "Wicked" said it best; Because I knew you, I have been changed for good.

EN said...

Ok, I didn't cry until I read Lauren's comment. I completely relate as this is exactly how I feel about my sister. It's why she inspired us to adopt Josie. What a wonderful family. Thank you so much for sharing your story!

Donna said...

Loved hearing about your family and Stacey. Thank you for sharing.

Danielle said...

Beautiful & precious & wonderful!! Such a lovely story. Thank you for sharing!!

Crystal Kupper said...

Let's hear more! I loved it! :-)

linda said...

Hi everyone! Thanks so much for all the sweet comments about Stacey's story. I've had tears running down my cheeks reading them! Stacey deserves all the praise, she is such a beautiful person. I want to answer Shannon's question about marriage and why I don't think it's possible for Stacey. Although she is very high functioning and amazes everyone who knows her, there is no way that she could handle the responsibilities of marriage. There are so many issues that she could never handle...finances, safety concerns, health not to mention sex. In an ideal world it would be wonderful if they could marry but we live with Stacey everyday and we know what she is capable of...marriage would be quite a challenge. It has nothing at all to do with benefits.

Jenny said...

This was so beautiful, loved all the photo's too. So glad you shared this :)

Jenna said...

Wow, this gave me goosebumps! Amazing story, loved reading it!

Mary said...

Beautiful family story. Thanks for sharing it.

Lowe Family in MS said...

What a WONDERFUL story! I would like to 3rd what, Becca's said! Laura, YES to what you said about BOTH of your parents!

Becky said...

Beautiful story! What a gift! For Stacey. For you. God's greatest blessings on your precious family.

Naomi said...

Wow!! This is incredible! Love all those photos too:)) Stacey seems like an incredible young woman!

kate kopp said...

Beautiful family!!! Is that her with Corky Thatcher?? Awesome!!

Liz said...

Beautiful story!

Mariska said...

Amazing story, amazing family!

Stan Koba said...

Hi everyone! Thanks for all of your wonderful comments. And to Kate, yes that is Chris Burke, aka Corky Thatcher!
Stan

Stan Koba said...

Hi everyone, thanks for all of your great comments!
And to Kate, yes that is Chris Burke, aka Corky Thatcher.

Sally said...

A beautiful love story. It's wonderful that you shared with us. God bless you all.