Sunday, May 13, 2012

Blessed to be Called Mother

I wanted to say "THANK YOU" for voting for Jacob to receive a handicap accessible van.  Today is the last day of voting.  If you have not voted you can go to the Mobility Awareness Site and vote before midnight.  If this is your first time voting for Jacob you can also use the dealer code 968 to get extra votes for Jacob.  You can only use the dealer code on your first vote.  If you have already voted using the dealer code you can still vote but not with extra votes.  

Tomorrow we should find out if Jacob made it into the top 10% of vote getters.  If he is in the top 10% he will move to the next round, where a committee will choose THREE people to receive handicap accessible vans.  These winners will be announced on national television!  Please be praying for this committee over the next couple of days.  I know that this has to be a very hard decision.  There are so many deserving people out there who really NEED handicap accessible transportation.

picture by Nina Mullins Photography

Today is Mother's Day.  I am so honored to be called mother by my children.  All of my children have touched my heart, each in their own way.  However, Jacob has touched my life in a way that I don't think anyone else could.  God does not make any mistakes and Jacob is no exception.  The joy in this child is indescribable unless you meet him in person.  Joy that can only come from our Heavenly Father pours from the depths of his soul.

Let me tell you why this is so amazing to me.  Jacob has quadraplegia cerebral palsy.  When he was about 6-9 months old, he was living in an orphanage, his health drastically deteriorated.  At the time they had no idea why.  When we saw his picture we just knew he would not survive if he was not adopted soon.  It was not until we got him home did we find out that Jacob was a living miracle.  Mind you Jacob was born in a third world country.  His very young mother lived in a very remote village and probably received no medical care.  Jacob's brain did not completely form.  He has a large cleft on one side of his brain.  The remainder of his brain did not completely form outward.

Jacob is unable to sit without full support.  He can hold his head up for a short time unassisted.  Jacob is also nonverbal.  He requires total care.  Jacob's neurologist said that Jacob should also be blind, deaf, on a feeding tube and have seizures.  Here is the amazing part!  Jacob is not blind.  Jacob is not deaf.  Jacob has never had a seizure.  Jacob is eating from a bottle and has just started eating baby foods.  Jacob is taking steps using a very special walker that fully supports his body. 

Now for the most amazing part but also the part that breaks my heart the most.  Remember Jacob's brain?  It is not all there.  BUT I have been talking with Jacob's therapist recently about his progress.  Jacob is almost developmentally on target cognitively for a four year old.   Did you hear that?  Jacob is cognitively a typical four year old boy.  Here is the part that breaks my heart.  Jacob is a typical cognitively developing four year old stuck in his on body.  Can you imagine being completely aware of everything going on around you but unable to move or speak?  Can you imagine knowing what you want or need but unable to tell anyone?  Seriously, I am bawling just typing that.

Here is where Jacob inspires me the most.  He is such a strong little boy.  He works so hard during therapy.  You can just see his determination.  He has learned how to communicate with eye gaze and grunts.  He very rarely gets frustrated.  Did I mention the absolute joy that just bubbles out of him?  If you have ever met Jacob in person you will never forget the smile on this kid's face.  Oh, the laughter.  He starts laughing and it is just contagious.  He loves life.  Every part of it.  I am so blessed to be called his mother.  God is so good!!

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