Sarah Barnes | Austin Author & Speaker - Advocate for Different Learners
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A MOTHER AND DAUGHTER ON A PROFOUNDLY DIFFERENT JOURNEY

Greeting from the Author

Welcome to my new website. When I started writing about my daughter Meredith in 2000, I never dreamed I’d end up writing a book or speaking to groups all over Texas. This website gives me a place to update my life with Meredith on a weekly basis. I hope my words continue to show the heart and advocacy behind that little girl you met on the beach all those years ago in my first column.

About the book

Sarah Barnes and her husband, Jim Hemphill, had big plans. He was a rocker with an eye on law school. She was a rising journalist. They traveled, laughed, loved, made plans, and married. But when their daughter, Meredith, was seven months old, they received a devastating diagnosis about her brain, and happily-ever-after became differently-ever-after from that point on. Although they faced many obstacles, their determined daughter helped them find hope and humor in the face of unthinkable challenge.

“A Different Road”

I have had the privilege of writing about my daughter for 17 years in a column called “A Different Road” for the Austin American-Statesman. I’ve written about her first steps, her first dance and the first time I realized she did not want the life I had envisioned for her. You can now read all these columns here. I will continue to write for the Statesman on an occasional basis.

Austin-area writer and speaker Sarah Barnes advocates and inspires with uplifting and sometimes-gut-wrenching stories of raising a daughter with intellectual disabilities and the different road they navigate
“It doesn’t trouble me that kids see Meredith as a student who needs an aide; it troubles me when they don’t see her at all.”

—Sarah Barnes, author of Meredith & Me

READ SARAH'S COLUMNS FROM THE AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN