- Paul and Ashley Kellogg have 6 biological children and 5 adopted children with special needs.
- Their daughter, who has cerebral palsy, opened their eyes and hearts to caring for special needs children.
- The couple believes that every child deserves a family.
Indiana couple Paul and Ashley Kellogg have 6 biological kids. Their 11-year-old daughter Myra is a special needs child who opened their hearts into caring for other children with special needs who also need a home.
Ashley says, “I feel like my heart will always be open to it, always be able to make room.”
Myra has cerebral palsy and is non-verbal and non-ambulatory. From taking care of Myra, they knew that they are capable of being good parents for other special needs children that would benefit from their skills.
Ashley says, “We had always thought about sibling adoption, but hadn’t really thought of special needs. [But we realized] that we had skills — and maybe a different perspective — that other people [didn’t] have.”
Since then, they have added 5 special children to their brood: two with Down Syndrome, 10-year-old Frannie and 1-year-old Theodore; two with dyslexia and four with vision impairment; 8-year-old Finton, who has albinism, and 7-year-old Bryant who has a seizure disorder and speech delays.
The couple has learned valuable lessons from their experience.
Ashley says, “I see a lot of benefits for our older, typical children to be able to have compassion for others and see others as equal, despite any type of ability or limitation. I definitely think it influences their lives as they grow up.”
Paul adds, “I just think that more often, families that are trying to adopt go to adopt neuro-typical kids or kids without special needs. But I think that these special kids can add wonderful things to your life and to your family that you may never have realized you were missing.”
The couple adopted both Micah, 7, and baby Theo from the only nationwide agency that caters exclusively to special needs children, the Special Angels Adoption Agency.
Its medical director, Jennifer Kelly, says, “It’s so important to let people know that this is a viable option. My own daughter’s birth parents were told over and over again that no one would want to adopt their daughter… I don’t want birth parents to hear that anymore.”
Which the Kellogg’s couple also believes: “Ultimately, every child deserves a family.”