Friday, January 31, 2014

Rachel's All Star Family

Our All Star today is actually a couple of All Stars and their equally All Star-y Mum. This morning I got up after a hard night where Chatterbox had hardly slept. I had a headache, and I was grumpy. While I got up tired, Chatterbox got up full of energy (how do they always do that??). The morning was hard. Then I got on Facebook and found that my friend, Rachel, had updated her status with the following:
Just writing this as an encouragement. At 18 months old my DD could only lie on the floor and handflap. Upon consulting specialists we were told that would be all she would ever achieve; that she would most likely not walk, talk or do any of the things that other kids would do. We were heart broken. It was not long after that we were given the diagnosis of Fragile X syndrome. I remember the grief and the pain at the time thinking “why me?” and what did that mean for the baby I was carrying.  Over the next 6 months my little girl started to roll over, crawl and by 24 months could walk pushing a trolley. I then had my second child only to find out she too had FX syndrome.

Over the years they were diagnosed with autism, ADHD, OCD and more. But here's the thing: those girls are now 17 and 19. The 19 year old is disabled but she is an absolute delight, she walks, talks writes and does most things, some with assistance, but she does them well. The 17 year old runs a radio program, is doing a Tafe course in IT and volunteered at the hospital in the kitchen. She recently won a Youth Award in the Inspirational category. She is a delight also and a joy. My third girl was diagnosed with AS and achieving wonderful things, things that the docs/specialist said would be impossible.

The reason I am sharing this is even though when our kids are young its soooo hard, their meltdowns behaviours and other challenges wear us out, and sometimes it’s just darn right overwhelming. But don't lose hope: our kids can still reach the stars and be all they can be in their own way. Keep believing and hoping for the best for them!!!! And huge hugs to all you mummies that are at that really hard stage right now. You are doing an awesome job xxxx

Talk about timing. This story was just what I needed to read this morning and I immediately knew I had to share it with others – thankfully Rachel was happy for me to turn her status into this post! While I was getting the photo for this post, I came across a status update Rachel had posted from when the 17 year old won her award:

She won!!! And after thanking everyone in tears she gave the following speech “It feels like I won a Grammy just by being here tonight. I want to say that having a disability never stops you from doing what you want to do” When I looked around many people were drying the tears from their eyes, complete strangers touched by her story and her speech.

They are such an inspirational family and I feel blessed to know Rachel.


Odd Socks Mummy is counting down the hours until the end of Summer holidays and the kids go back to school.  She is, however, feeling very grateful to know that it gets better.

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