"Sometimes the things we can't change end up changing us!" In March 2017, the Winters family received news that would change the course of their lives forever. Keenan and Natalya's daughter was a little over a year old when the doctors became concerned that she was falling behind on the growth charts. Born 40 weeks, weighing 5lbs 11oz, she was small and although she spent her first 8 days in the NICU, she was seemingly healthy; therefore Keenan and Natalya were not alarmed. However, Gray's pediatrician urged them to pursue the idea of having her seen by a specialist; they were both apprehensive, but also willing to ensure all was well. They had no idea that their first visit to the specialized clinics at Children's of Alabama (Endocrinology) would situate in their lives as a new normal. Several tests later they received the results - Turner syndrome. Outside of Natalya's college Genetics course, she
knew very little about the Turner syndrome (TS). She began to research and read everything she could find on TS, soon understanding that all of her questions did not lend to an explanation. It is rare and complex. Their families and close friends were also affected by the news, and like Keenan and Natalya, they knew very little about TS. It was important that they explored a true understanding of what they were faced with in an effort to give Gray the best quality of life.
Subsequently, their personal experiences became the genesis of Natalya's pursuit as she tried to gain, understand and share knowledge regarding TS. Belles and Butterflies was birth from her personal struggle as well as empathy for countless parents around the world whose children are affected by this rare disorder. A deep desire to understand the intricate details of TS and how to most appropriately care for her daughter manifested into a project of love. Although Gray is small and will have some health challenges, Keenan and Natalya wanted to be intentional about creating a space where she is celebrated.