by Jordan Gribble from the Daily Comet:
Living with Down syndrome isn't easy, but 21-year-old Sean Adams is finding happiness through a positive outlook and a supportive family.
The Larose resident tells that story his newly published book, “I am Happy to Be Me.”
“It talks about my life with Down syndrome and shows others what life is like with Down,” said Sean, who lives with his parents, Melisa and John Adams. “Some people don't accept their disability. But I think everyone should know that I'm glad I have my disability. It's a gift from God that should not be taken for granted.”
Down syndrome is a condition that someone is born with that causes below average mental abilities and problems in physical development.
Taking inspiration from the deaf and blind Helen Keller, who even with her disabilities was able to write 12 books during her lifetime, Sean says he too wants to give a voice to the voiceless.
“Some kids with disabilities, they don't speak up, and they need a voice. I write to be a voice,” he said.
Sean began writing the book as a freshman at South Lafourche High School. It began slowly at first. But finally with hard work and the guidance of his godmother, who is also a published author, Sean was able to complete the book.
“When he first started writing he wanted to write big novels like 'Harry Potter.' But we told him that he'd have to narrow it down to a page at a time. We said that when he could write a couple of sentences that make sense we could move on from there. One day he was with his godmother, and they sent it off and the publishing house agreed to publish it,” Melisa said.
The book's first printing of 400 copies, which were dispersed locally, have already sold out, Melisa said.
Sean said he hasn't decided what to write next because he's too busy thinking of ideas.
He spends his time training for the 2014 Special Olympics USA National Games in New Jersey this month where he'll compete for the national team in swimming.
Swimming, like writing, is hard work but worth the payoff, Sean said.
“When you first get into it, it's hard. But if you love something, go for it. If you're tired, keep giving it your all,” he said.
Published by Tate Publishing and Enterprises, the book is available through bookstores nationwide, www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore, barnesandnoble.com or amazon.com.
Staff Writer Jordan Gribble can be reached at 857-2208 or firstname.lastname@example.org.