Crestview mom: Life with Benjamin 'not that different than life with a typical child'

Benjamin Shea

Stefanie Shea introduces her sons Logan, 2, and Benjamin to colorful birds during a family zoo outing.

Published: Monday, October 21, 2013 at 06:44 PM.

Editor’s Note: This is the first installment of a series on north Okaloosa County residents with Down syndrome. The National Down Syndrome Society’s Buddy Walk is Oct. 26 in DeFuniak Springs.

CRESTVIEW — Benjamin Shea, at 13 months old, is pretty much like any other toddler.

"He laughs the same, he cries the same, he teethes the same,” Benji's mother, Stefanie Shea, said. “He has the same stubborn streak as his brother and sister."

But Benji, as his family calls him, has Down syndrome.

Stefanie and her husband, Chris, knew Benji was going to be special when prenatal screenings came back positive for the genetic disorder that affects development.

"We knew we were going to be blessed," Stefanie said.

While life is as routine in the Shea household as it was when Benji's 2-year-old brother, Logan, was his age, there are a few extra challenges, including physical therapy and other medical appointments, Stefanie said.

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