Meet Betsy Alice Everett, winner in the family category of the Mayor’s Advisory Committee on People with Disablities Awards of 2011.

Betsy is proud mother to Kirstin Sunshine, a vivacious fun-loving 14-year-old. Kirstin has a few limitations but Betsy doesn’t see it that way and neither does anyone else who has come within 200 miles of the Everett family. So we are at the awards ceremony earlier this week and Betsy is called up to receive her award. And there is applause. Kirstin loves applause. She thinks everyone is clapping for her, even if they’re not. And Kirstin starts to laugh. She has an incredible laugh. When she starts up everyone just follows along.

The emcee tells the audience Kirstin loves applause and they start clapping again. More laughing. Betsy and Kirstin return to their seats and the next presentation begins. Kirstin is still laughing and now Betsy and I are laughing, too. How inappropriate. How wonderfully inappropriate. Spontaneous laughter. But we are in a room full of spontaneous people and nobody minds.

Is Betsy the mother of the year? You bet she is. Just look at her kid.

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