CHLA - The Unstoppable Fiona Ashe

Don’t believe what Fiona Ashe may tell you. Her parents did not purchase her at Target, though after hearing that claim enough times, her mother finally agreed to it.

“Two weeks ago in the car,” Angie Ashe says, “she was like, ‘Where did you buy me from?’ I just kind of chuckled. ‘We didn’t buy you from anywhere. Do you mean where were you born?’ ‘No, where did you buy me?’ I couldn’t answer her correctly. I kept saying, ‘You were born in China; we adopted you.’ Finally, I said, ‘You want me to say we bought you from Target?’ She just smiled. ‘Yeah, you bought me from Target.’ OK!”

As charming a story as that would make, the truth is equal to it—and considerably more plausible. It starts with longstanding plans that Angie and her husband, Rob, had made to adopt a child. “That was on the table even before we got married,” Angie says. Their intentions became more focused after their daughter Elliot was born with arthrogryposis, a disease that disrupts joint movement. Elliot’s case is extreme: Born with her arms stuck straight and her legs bent, she has been a patient at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles since infancy, undergoing numerous surgeries and years of physical therapy.