Special Olympics And P&G Say Thank You Mom

By Jun 16, 2011May 13th, 201227 Comments

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In celebration of the Special Olympics World Summer Games happening this summer in Greece, we’re proud to be partnering with Procter & Gamble as a way to encourage the great athletes participating and especially the mothers who devote so much time to helping them achieve their dreams.

Please consider getting involved in a way that will help boost P&G’s contribution. For every new Facebook fan or comment received at facebook.com/thankyoumom, P&G will donate $1 to support Special Olympics Team USA’s journey to the World Summer Games in Athens, Greece, up to $250,000.

Today we’d like to feature one amazing Mom and her amazing daughter!

Jessica, from Four Plus An Angel is the mother of 15 year old Ashlyn, a Special Olympics participant for years now. Ashlyn was diagnosed with autism and could only say three words at the age of four. Jessica was told Ashlyn would never develop conversational language. The fact that Ashlyn herself asked to answer my questions herself via video goes to show how capable she is regardless of her early diagnosis.

Read on to learn more about Ashlyn in this fascinating interview I had with her and please show her some support by clicking on the video she made below just for us!

Your mom says you were diagnosed with autism over ten years ago…how has this been a challenge for you?

People don’t understand me. They don’t understand what I need all the time and it is hard for me to tell them because I don’t know how to say it.

What is a common misconception people have about what you are capable of doing?

They give me too much help when I don’t need it. There are a lot of things I can do on my own. People with autism are capable of more than you think.

How has your mom helped you through difficult days?

My mom calls my teachers when I am having a bad day. When she sees me having a hard time she lets me take a break and tries to make sure that noises aren’t too loud for me.


A huge thank you to Ashlyn for sharing such honest and poignant answers! Your video is lovely and totally made me hungry for some of that good cooking! Also thank you to Ashlyn’s very mother Jessica, for sharing Ashlyn with the rest of us.  I’m so glad you chose to ignore her earlier prognosis and instead helped your daughter reach for the stars.

Be sure to visit Jessica and Ashyln at Four Plus An Angel as well as help boost P&G’s donation simply by liking their thank you mom Facebook page: facebook.com/thankyoumom


  • Terri says:

    Terrific. Thank you for sharing this. I work with people who are differently abled. Some of the most insightful, spiritual and most genuine people I have ever met are those others refer to as “disabled”.

  • Go Ashlyn!!!! Jessica, what a wonderful daughter you have!!

  • incredible.

    Ashlyn is a wonderful example. Congratulations for not letting anything stand in your way.

    Jessica- you rock as a mom. Being your child’s advocate is so important

  • Katie says:

    You go girlfriend!!

  • Brandy says:

    What a neat family!

  • Charlotte says:

    Mommy and Ashlyn–I am so proud of you both! Thank you for sharing your story with us. And Ashlyn, you did a wonderful job on camera!!!

  • Good job with the interview and congratulations Ashlyn. I wish you reach your stars in life and are very successful at the games this year. Jessica you have a great daughter.

  • Sue says:

    Well Done, Ashlyn! Your mom will be so proud of you. Your spirit will encourage a lot of people. Thank you and thank your great mother!

  • Jessica says:

    She did great in her video!

  • Kimberly says:

    What a sweet girl you’ve raised, Jessica! You should be one proud mama!

  • Patti says:

    I love this! As a mommy to a baby girl with Down syndrome, this really touched me. Congrats, Ashlyn!

  • Kelly Hunter says:

    Way to go Ashlyn! I am so proud of you. You have never let anyone or anything hold you back. Special Olympics are amazing. So is soccer! As always you have picked the best things ever! You are truly one amazing young lady. Please keep sharing your amazing story and your amazing mom with us all!
    Love you so much! Mrs. Hunter

    • Jessica says:

      Kelly- Thank you so much for visiting here and for the amazing start you gave Ashlyn. I will never be able to thank you enough.

  • Christine says:

    Truly inspirational! Thank you for interviewing and featuring Ashlyn.

  • Ali says:

    GO ASHLYN! She’s so poised for a teenager! And a 15 year old that can make stuffed cabbage??? Send that girl to my house.

  • Oh Jessica – so wonderful to see you here. What an inspiration your sweet girl is. Love you. xoxo

  • Jessica says:

    Love seeing Ashlyn here! Thanks for featuring us, I couldn’t be more proud her!

  • Cheryl D. says:

    Yay to Jessica and her wonderful daughter! It’s amazing what early intervention can accomplish!

  • Kudos to Ashlyn and her mom! My 18 yr old son has autism. It’s a long hard road and can be so frustrating trying to get people to realize that there is a disability these kids are dealing with. Great job!

    • Jessica says:

      Couldn’t agree more, it has been a long road but looking back, I never dreamed she would be doing as well as she is now. I hope things are going great with your son.

      • Things are going. Some good and some not so good, but we’re making it. Just when things get tough and I don’t think I can make it another day I get a call or letter from his bio grandmother, he’s adopted. She reminds me of how thankful she is that her daughter didn’t raise my son and how perfect our family has been for him. We’ll make it. He’ll make it and Ashlyn (beautiful name) will make it.

  • Mimi says:

    What an amazing story. Truly inspiring 🙂

  • Katie says:

    Keep it up Ashlyn! Remember, we are not disabled. We just do things in our own way. Always follow your dreams. Good luck at the games this summer! *Rooting for you from Hawaii*!