This Mom Left Her 'June Cleaver' Past Behind to Forge a New Path After Daughter's Sudden SMA Diagnosis

What's the best advice you can share with new parents?

Try not to have any expectations. You have no idea what kind of child you're going to have when you bring a little one into your home, whether through natural birth, adoption, foster care, whatever. Every day you'll have to just get up and figure it out. Be thankful for what the Lord gave you and your child, then find your strength and run with it.

What would you want your daughter to say about you as a parent?

I hope that she says, "My mom never gave up on me. Even on the days when I was hard to love, on the days when I was hooked up to respiratory equipment in hospitals, on days I felt unloved — my mom never gave up on me." I hope she says that I never let her use her disease as a crutch or to her advantage, but that I pushed her to be the best Faith Fortenberry that she can be.

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