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Her Story: Theresa Nix

Motivating Stories from Local Women


Every woman has a story to tell, and no two stories are alike. Meet the women who have persevered through challenges and tribulations and come out the other side stronger than ever. These unique individuals have seen their fair share of adversity but continue to inspire those around them with the lessons they have learned and their love of life. Read on for a truly motivating story by a woman who experienced them firsthand.


Photography by Rich Smith / Photos taken on location at Hotel Indigo




Theresa Nix, Hixson


“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I – I took the one less traveled by.” Robert Frost’s words from high school English class repeat in my head along with multiple verses memorized throughout my life – “All things work together for good … I can do all things through Christ … He will make your paths straight.” 

Until about eight years ago, my life was on a relatively consistent and comfortable path. Being a teacher and a coach was all I knew for years, but then God met me at a fork in the road and changed the entire trajectory of my life. 

When I had my son, I heard “I’m sorry” from friends, family, doctors, and nurses – almost more than the usual “congratulations.” I am sure I have done the same thing without understanding the hurt that brings an already-worried parent. I just wanted to enjoy my newborn without the fear of what the future might hold. 

Everett has Down syndrome, and at the time, my fear was only magnified by my lack of knowledge and experience with what having something extra really meant. Now, it is familiar, it is known, it is loved, and it is cherished. I am thankful for the way my son has changed me in ways I didn’t know I needed. It’s like when Dorothy wakes up in the colorful land of Oz. Not that it is all happiness and rainbows, but I have a deeper understanding of the entire world around me. It opened a door to friends, families, knowledge, heartache, encouragement, and love that I would have never known. 

This less-traveled road helped me create a family for families who have children with disabilities through the nonprofit Downside Up. It has been a winding and wild journey of faith for sure, but just as Dorothy’s eyes were opened to a beautiful world beyond her own, I would not turn back to the black and white world of before. This road, this life, this child has made all the difference.

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