Ashton has always LOVED pink! From pink hair bows and Crocs when she was little to her brand new pink tennis shoes, Ashton is rarely seen without wearing something pink. While most people sort laundry into loads of whites and colors, Ashton has her very own pink load. Pink even goes beyond her clothes. Her bedroom is painted pink, her wheel chair is pink, and her stroller is pink.
Anyone that knows her relates the color pink with Ashton. There was no definitive start to her love of pink…it’s just always been there.
Ashton is your typical “girly” girl. She loves playing Barbies and babies. In fact, if you ask her what she wants as a gift for any occasion, she’ll tell you that she wants Barbies and babies. She spends hours dressing, undressing, and redressing Barbies and only stops long enough to be a mom or nurse to her babies.
School is also a love of Ashton’s. From the minute she gets home, she starts asking when she can go back. She constantly talks about the friends she has in her class and her teachers. If it were up to her, school would be year round. However, much to her dismay, she does have to take a break over the summer, which allows time for relaxing at the river and for spending more time playing with her sister, Emily.
Recently, because of her mom’s interest in running, Ashton has taken up the sport. She’s begun participating in races by riding in her stroller while her family runs beside her.
Day to Day
Ashton’s daily routine is typically “routine” by design. She doesn’t like change and finds comfort in familiar things. She typically starts her day with pancakes and yogurt for breakfast and requests a turkey sandwich for lunch before beginning to worry about what she’s going to have for dinner. If left up to her, she would alternate dinners between Chic-fil-A, macaroni pizza, or cheese quesadillas.
The struggles she faces each day are very exhausting. Activities like walking, getting dressed, going to school, and playing are exhausting. Most people would take these things for granted, but because of her challenges with balance and fine motor skills, everything becomes a chore. This usually results in her sleeping 11-12 hours each night and taking an afternoon nap.
However, even with all of her struggles, Ashton has one of the best attitudes you’ll ever see. She always sees the positive (pink) side of things and is never without a smile on her face!
Despite the day to day struggles and the reality that faces Ashton and her family, Niemann-Pick does not define this family. Ashton, her parents, Chris & Laurie, and her sister, Emily, have defined a “normal” that works for them. This may not have been the path that any of them predicted for their lives, but the lessons they’ve learned and outpouring of blessings they’ve received are immeasurable.
Ashton teaches people to appreciate the little things in life – small accomplishments, smiles, singing the wrong words to songs, and laughing at silly jokes. Her positive outlook is contagious and she always leaves people feeling better about whatever life has thrown their way.