Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Why WE Love Dakota…Sarahn

Sarahn is one of those truly beautiful people from the inside out!! She has a heart of gold…that is for sure!! I honestly didn’t know that she had met Dakota before his accident until reading her sweet letter to Dakota but the way she has loved and embraced him from the minute she met him since his accident has meant so much to me!

Sarahn has been one of those incredible cheerleaders for Dakota and our family on my blog for sure! I often see her sweet name in the comments and it makes me smile that she cares so much to check in on our crazy life and leave encouraging comments to keep me going!

This summer was the first times we have really gotten to hang out and be around each other and the way she treats Dakota and has taught her boys to love Dakota is truly honorable. She is another one of those people who isn’t afraid to just come up and kiss his sweet face or jump in and help him at the zoo when I’m not paying attention.

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Sarahn helping Dakota feel an elephant tooth

She has helped her boys learn to love Dakota and all people with differences and Dakota and I are SO grateful for their friendship!

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Dakota with Memphis and Dempsey (Sarahn’s boys)

Sarahn just being a cute mom

Here is what she had to say about Dakota:

Whenever I see Dakota, I’m overcome with the greatest urge to kiss his handsomely sweet face! I just can’t seem to help myself! Not only is he a seriously good-looking dude—but he absolutely sparkles!
Dakota has always been this way.

The first time I met Dakota (as a little, teeny boy), he left an impression on me. After our brief “meeting”—my husband and I walked away so darn impressed with not only Dakota’s stellar behavior, but how awesome his parents seemed. We wanted to track them down and be friends, but it took almost three years until we connected again! (I know—we missed out on some priceless time with the Friedli’s!)

About a year after his accident, I got to see Dakota again. I braced myself for a flood of emotions. After having my only sister, Kelsey, contract a virus on her brain as a baby (which caused nine years of epilepsy), and then watching her suffer through a traumatic brain injury as a 7-year-old girl, Dakota’s story was close to home. Although I steeled myself, I quickly realized I didn’t need to do it. That same sparkle was STILL just a-shining away in Dakota! I instantly felt my heart swell and I knew he was one of those extra-extraordinary “earth angels” Heavenly Father has carefully placed with us. I immediately recognized the incredibly strong spirit inside of Dakota’s little body.

There was a time I was too bitter to think this way, but after nearly 20 years of tears, trials, and triumphs with my sister, I now know Heavenly Father gave Kelsey and Dakota to us to make us better. They were just too good for this world, so our loving Father in Heaven protected them. I know where they will be when all is said and done, and—darn it—I want to be there with them!

I guess you could say I have a particularly special place in my heart for Dakota—and his amazing parents! They handle their trials with such grace and I am always in awe of their strength. I am a lucky lady to know their family!

Dakota’s sparkle never ceases to brighten my day! His smiles make me smile—and I can’t get enough of that little chuckle of his!

Sparkle on, Dakota Man!



Thank you SO much Sarahn for being a part of Dakota’s birthday month and for being one of his biggest fans!!

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