Episode 142: Terah Belle and the Indy Effect: How a Tiny Girl with Down Syndrome Brought Light and Joy into the World

Terah Belle is the mother of a very special little girl named Indy Llew, who stole the hearts of thousands of people across the globe. Indy was born with down syndrome in May of 2016, and although it was a scary and unexpected diagnosis at first for Terah, she says it turned out to be the best thing about Indy. Terah shares what it's like to have a daughter with down syndrome, and then what it was like watching Indy go through chemotherapy to stop early stages of Leukemia, only to have it return later and her to fight cancer for a second time. Indy's earthly life ended far too early, in June of 2021 just after her 5th birthday, but her story and her light and joy and courage continues to inspire and touch the lives of thousands of people. This interview felt like a sacred gift, a tender and raw and heart-felt journey between a mother and a daughter. Terah shared with me so many miracles and tender mercies and little ways that she sees Indy all the time in her life, and I felt the warmth and truthfulness of that as we talked about her sweet Indy. I wish we could've had Indy speak today too, but this next sound clip will give you a tiny piece of the magic of Indy Llew.


This week’s episode is sponsored in part by Ana Luisa Jewelry. Treat yourself and your loved ones to beautiful sustainable jewelry. Go to shop.analuisa.com/mintarrow and use code MINTARROW for 10% off.

This episode is also sponsored by Away. Start your 100-day trial and shop the entire Away lineup of travel essentials, including their best-selling suitcases, at awaytravel.com/mintarrow.


Time Stamps:

[01:10] – Listen to this next sound clip that gives you a tiny piece of the magic of Indy Llew.

[04:08] – Terah Belle shares the moments right after Indy Llew’s birth when she learnt of her daughter having Down syndrome.

[06:10] – How long did it take for Terah and her husband to accept the Down syndrome diagnosis?

[08:44] – Terah talks about the travel adventures of mommy, daddy, and joyful Indy Llew.

[10:57] – Why did Terah get the feeling she needed to share the story of Indy Llew as the family developed on this journey?

[13:12] – These were the first signs that there may be more going on with Indy Llew. Terah shares her thoughts about the red flags she noticed.

[15:12] – After moving to a new location for Indy Llew’s health, Terah says Indy Llew showed signs of Lukemia.

[18:08] – Terah describes the back and forth of trying to confirm Indy Llew’s cancerous diagnosis.

[20:33] – What did the family do to make the hospital like a home?

[22:20] – Terah talks about the blessings and pleasant surprises in the middle of Indy Llew’s journey.

[25:01] – What kind of big sister was Indy Llew after Terah gave birth to new baby girl Birdy?

[27:34] – Terah and her family are very intentional about protecting Indy Llew’s presence and memory.

[29:33] – Terah agrees that the ones who are no longer with us on Earth are able to be present with us in a whole new way.

[31:17] – Terah recaps the two years before Indy Llew’s passing and describes the sequences of events that no one could predict.

[34:04] – What happened when a seemingly successful transplant procedure took a turn?

[35:42] – Terah says this was the moment she realized Indy Llew had one foot on either side of life.

[37:58] – People pulled together to support Indy Llew and her family. Terah describes the miracle her daughter experienced as others kept Indy Llew in their thoughts.

[39:59] – Indy Llew became a light for others during the global pandemic.

[42:42] – Terah talks about the shock of a drastic turn in Indy Llew’s health.

[45:14] – Listen to Terah share the mindset behind a tough decision right before the final moments of spending time with joyful Indy Llew.

[48:13] – What moments made Terah feel less alone? How did Indy Llew’s story impact people who followed her journey?

[50:58] – Here is the ultimate reason Terah shares the legacy of Indy Llew.

[52:39] – Remember, the veil between either side of life does not separate us as much as we think. Terah says her journey with her family brought her closer to heaven.

[55:10] – The journey of Terah and her family continues.


Supporting Resources:

Instagram @terahbelle

Facebook @terahbelle

Terah Belle


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