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Shonna G.
Sunday, March 6, 2022

Inspired Participant Stories

The Good, the Bad, and the Amazing

Shonna G., Minnesota, USA
TendHer Heart Luncheon Mom - and so much more  

 Shonna G. and her amazing daughter  TendHer Heart Luncheon Moms, 2021

Shonna G. is a force of nature with a beaming light planted on top. As one of the Chad Greenway Foundation's TendHer Heart Moms, she can certainly speak for herself:  "I have been on this journey for 20 years; I'm a bit of a pro, and passionate about helping families, especially Moms, caring for children with disabilities. I have experienced the good, the bad, and the ugly and I am happy to help assist a new mom find her way on this wild journey as well."

 Shonna G.'s entire family Founders Chad and Jenni Greenway Lead the TendHer Heart Luncheon

Shonna G. has been attending Greenway's Lead the Way Foundation's TendHer Heart Brunch for a couple of years.  After our most recent brunch, we sent out a request for email comments, and the entire Foundation team was touched by her note:
"I just wanted to express my deepest, heartfelt Thank-You to Chad and Jenni and the whole team that collectively carries out this amazing event for all of us Moms carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders.   I have attended this event a couple times now with my dearest friend who also cares for children with special needs. It is such a positive, supportive, encouraging event and the impact is immeasurable.

I did find the courage to share a bit of my journey in 2019. Mainly focusing on the s#*% show my life was with a special needs child and 3 healthy siblings; the emotions, feelings of defeat, inadequacy, judgement, and finally coming to the realization (many years later) that I was enough, and that the only opinion that mattered were those living in my house. I learned to let go and not fault people that did not understand, found friends that have walked in my shoes, and learned to celebrate the wins no matter how big or small. I want to encourage other mom's to lean on each other and also find that strength from within. We have all had some ups and downs and likely felt like failures more times than not, but I strongly believe with events like TendHer Heart and kindness from genuinely good people like Chad and Jenni and their Lead the Way Foundation, those feelings can be turned into strength.

I am past the young child years and the chaos that was our life. My kids are all grown now, somehow surviving what I thought at the time were parenting failures, successfully forging their own paths. My special needs daughter is a junior at the University of Minnesota, Pre-Med. She lives at home and maybe always will but that is okay. She has made me a better person. It just took me a really long time to realize I did the same for her.     

TendHer Heart is truly an amazing experience, and unless you are a mother of a child with special needs (if you are, hugs to you), you can't understand the importance of having just one day to celebrate, pamper, and love oneself."

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