Artwork for The Rare Life

The Rare Life

Madeline Cheney

This is the real, raw, and all the feels of loving a child with disabilities. Episodes feature parent-guests, professionals, and solo episodes with host Madeline Cheney. Their authentic conversations don’t shy away from the strong and mixed emotions that often accompany medically-complex parenting. Parents listen in to feel seen, validated, and receive much-needed solidarity. Professionals working... more

PublishesWeeklyEpisodes196Founded4 years ago
Number of ListenersCategories
Kids & FamilyParenting

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Artwork for The Rare Life

Latest Episodes

When you have a medically complex child, you probably have some realization that the experience you have with your child isn’t “typical.” But sometimes, it’s hard to understand just how different from the “norm” it was, until another child comes alon... more

6 days ago

After Ashley Smith’s son Deacon was admitted to the NICU, and one thing after another cascaded out of control with his care, she found herself literally screaming in the nursery “THIS IS NOT MY PLAN!” more

13 days ago

Nothing breeds resentment faster than one member of a romantic partnership feeling like they're pulling all the weight in one area of life. And when it comes to the parents of medically complex kids, that resentment can compound even faster, especial... more

20 days ago

Before she had her son, Serena was already a pediatric SLP, business owner, and disability advocate who spent her time empowering families to understand and become more comfortable with their children’s disabilities. So, she was prepared for anything... more

a month ago


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5.0 out of 5 stars from 239 ratings
  • A belonging I longed for

    Thank You Madeline, so much for The Rare Life. Your content touches more people than you may think. I am a mother of a medically complex child, though he does not have a rare diagnosis of any kind. I had a complicated pregnancy and traumatic birth with my son Vincent, who arrived unduly early at 25 weeks gestation. Due to his very early arrival, he has a laundry list of diagnoses. He’s now 17 months and I only recently saw “medically complex child” written in his medical record. Interestingly en... more

    Apple Podcasts
    United States7 months ago
  • 5-Star Review - Dr. Tay

    I love this podcast because of the honest and authentic conversations Madeleine brings to the table. As a licensed psychologist that works with neurodivergent children, it makes my heart so full that there are resources like this podcast for all families to listen to!

    Apple Podcasts
    United States9 months ago
  • Nicu nurses

    I am a nicu nurse. It was so nice to hear how so many of us feel. And what parents can expect. I am retired now but I still miss the babies and the families I got close too. It is a privilege to take care of these little babies who fight to live. And make no mistake we do love the babies I mean real love.

    Apple Podcasts
    United Statesa year ago
  • Alexis’ Story

    Thank you for sharing this episode and Alexis, for sharing your story. I needed to hear this. Thank you.

    Apple Podcasts
    United Statesa year ago
  • Great Viewpoints

    I have enjoyed listening to my first few episodes. As a mom of a daughter with multiple diagnoses I have found much to connect with. Thanks for sharing your heart.

    Apple Podcasts
    United Statesa year ago


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The Rare Life launched 4 years ago and published 196 episodes to date. You can find more information about this podcast including rankings, audience demographics and engagement in our podcast database.

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