top of page
Unwrapping the Gifts of Disability
A Mother’s Reflections on Raising a Son with Down Syndrome

Have you just discovered that your baby has Down syndrome?
Are you raising or helping to guide a loved one with Down syndrome?
Do you want to gain insight into the challenges and gifts of disability?


If you answered yes to any of these questions, this book is a must-read.

When Jadene Sloan Ransdell welcomed her new baby to the family in the seventies, the diagnosis of Down syndrome came as a shock. In this honest and deeply personal book she takes you with her as she shares the hopeless future their pediatrician painted at the time of Matt's diagnosis, through the discovery of additional challenges, and the wonderful life he enjoys today as an aging adult with Down syndrome.

As the family navigated the highs and lows and many challenges faced throughout the years, Jadene's positive outlook and persistent hope for a better life for her son shone through brightly, and she found her voice and passion for advocacy.

Unwrapping the Gifts of Disability is a celebration of the relationship she has with her son and all he has taught her along the way. As she explores the gifts she has received from Matt, Jadene also invites you to answer questions that will help you find more love, hope, and meaning in your life as you learn to unwrap your own gifts.

PayPal ButtonPayPal Button

$3.21 of each book purchased will be donated to the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS)

“What a pleasure to read Jadene's series of thank you notes to her son, Matt, who has Down syndrome. Thank you, Jadene, for sharing Matt's journey and allowing the readers to celebrate with you. I am grateful for the willingness of families to share their experiences and to help me become a better physician for their loved ones with Down syndrome.”

Brian Chicoine, MD Medical Director,
Advocate Medical Group Adult Down Syndrome Center

Deenie 1 2019.jpg
Jadene Sloan Ransdell

Family & Disability Advocate

Jadene S. Ransdell has a B.S. in Special Education and nearly fifty years of experience working with families and professionals in many areas related to developmental disabilities. Jadene’s knowledge of family and disability issues is enhanced by her first-hand life adventures with her own family. She and her husband, Joe, shared 51 years together before his death from COVID in March 2021. Their older son, Michael is a single father with two sons. Jadene’s and Joe’s younger son, Matthew, was born with Down syndrome and has additional diagnoses of Autism, and Apraxia. Despite a more recent diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease, Matt still leads a successful life of his own, with supports in the community. Jadene’s real-world experiences with Matt bring a unique perspective to her work which she shares through her writing, workshops, and seminars.

Contact Jadene at:

bottom of page