Dec 3, 2019
Michelle Sullivan joins Amanda and Vickie on today’s
Michelle is a warrior mom whose advocacy was inspired by her
son, Eli, who has Down’s Syndrome, to found Littlest Warrior
Apparel and to write a book entitled Eli, Included, which
is a fictional story about Eli's first day of school.
Are you ready to be inspired? Listen in to hear about Michelle’s
journey and her mission to help others see that everyone has value
and something to offer.
- Michelle shares an overview of some of the negativity she
received from medical professionals and family members upon
learning during her pregnancy that her son had Down’s Syndrome, and
the actual blessing that he is. She also provides the background of
how she came to start Littlest Warrior Apparel.
- Amanda, Vickie, and Michelle discuss perceptions about Down’s
Syndrome and other differently-abled people.
- Michelle relates how friends provided resources for early
intervention, and how she initially didn’t know anything about
inclusion. Meeting people and hearing their stories had a big
impact on her.
- All children, including those with Down’s Syndrome, benefit
from being in a classroom with others and being exposed to
different learning styles and various viewpoints.
- Michelle describes how her three older daughters were in
private school before Eli was born, how the school mistreated one
daughter with ADHD and the hard lessons she learned from that.
- Having decided they wanted Eli included, he was started in IEP
in preschool at age 3, and he was in a classroom with typical
peers. As time got closer to kindergarten, Michelle started hearing
stories about kids that were not included, so she wrote the book,
Eli, Included, as a step of faith.
- As it turns out, when they went to his IEP, they did not want
to include him. Michelle was told that if he were in a classroom,
he would just be back in the classroom with his aide, “trying” to
do all the work.
- Her husband was at that meeting and stepped up to the plate,
and asked for them to just let him try. The school agreed on a
- Thankfully, within a week they found out that Eli had been
accepted to the charter school for which they’d applied. This
charter school is one that values inclusion.
- Michelle describes her emotions at the first meeting she
attended at the charter school.
- “Advocate Like a Mother™” - this is what Michelle kept hearing
in the back of her mind.
After some time, she did a search to make sure the
slogan wasn’t taken, put it on a shirt, and got it trademarked. The
shirt became wildly popular and the basis for her Littlest Warrior
- From there, she started her podcast to help support other moms
who were doing incredible things.
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Eli, Included by Michelle Sullivan
Connect with Michelle!