Dear Care2 Friends,   

As you know, as passionate activists in the Down syndrome community, we petitioned Disney to represent characters with disabilities in the hopes that through the millions of lives Disney reaches, society can learn lessons of diversity, compassion, and acceptance through their animated films since disabled people are often looked down upon and bullied.

What you may not know, is why we are such passionate activists and how our adorable, feisty miracle of a daughter, Delaney Skye, faced fear and prejudice before she was even born!

After a prenatal diagnosis of Trisomy 21 (Down syndrome), Delaney’s birth Mama (Andréa) who was contracted as a pregnancy surrogate, dealt with pressures and legal threats from the intended parents that nearly cost Delaney her chance to light up the world. And Delaney’s “Mommy-O” (Keston) who struggled for years with a shameful bias against the disabled, “had been given a second chance by an amazing little muse who gave me a unique experience, a bizarre divine intervention that made me look in the mirror…She made me see that I could do better.” reflects Keston. We want to share Delaney’s full, inspiring story—pre- and post-birth—with the world, beginning with you the 96,000 caring signers of the petition!

That’s why we wrote Saving Delaney: From Surrogacy to Family (Cleis Press; April 2016; $16.95; ISBN: 978-1-62778-168-8). We’re thrilled to let you know our memoir is now available for pre-order at Amazon(http://www.amazon.com/Saving-Delaney-Keston-Ott-Dahl/dp/1627781684) and Barnes and Noble(http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/saving-delaney-keston-ott-dahl/1122772243?ean=9781627781688).

Saving Delaney is a heartwarming memoir that will touch and inspire as you learn how we became mothers “by accident” to a very special child—after a long and winding journey riddled with legal, medical, and emotional hurdles. Despite dire predictions from doctors, legal threats from the intended parents and our initial lack of interest in expanding our family (we were already raising Andréa’s two kids from her first marriage and Keston was a middle-aged “wild child”), we vowed to keep the baby and do everything in our power to give our daughter the chance to live a healthy, full, and meaningful life.

In Saving Delaney, we also share our extensive, stigma-shattering research into Down syndrome, prenatal mental health-boosting measures, such as choline and early intervention methods, which have helped Delaney Skye be the bright, energetic, adorable, and thriving toddler who continues to meet and exceed all milestones, defying her diagnosis and delighting her many admirers. Above all, this heartwarming memoir reveals how the gift of Delaney Skye, our tiny “warrior from heaven,” strengthened our bonds as a family and made Keston want to become a better person.                             

I hope you will be moved to read Saving Delaney and help us spread the word. Delaney’s story supports our work with the Delaney Ott-Dahl Foundation (www.DelaneyOtt-DahlFoundation.org), a non-profit organization that advocates for early intervention and offers resources for families expecting special needs children. Thank you for your consideration and your friendship.