For so many of our children, more birthdays have been spent in cast than out. Their tiny spines, tethered at an early age, just as you would tether a sampling to allow it time to grow straight and tall. Starting early is their chance for a life free from their protective coverings. A chance, not a guarantee, yet a chance is something to hold. Although our little ones are probably closing their eyes and wishing for wonders of friends and toys, candy and cakes, parents are closing their eyes and holding their breath wishing for spines, straight and tall. I know this has been my wish for the past three birthdays.
Our beautiful friend, Jackson, spent the last 2 of his 4 birthdays in a cast. His fabulous family including his twin brother Cam never gave up hope that they would celebrate a birthday cast free, with his spine holding straight and tall. Wishes come true and this past summer we celebrated a milestone 6 months shy of his 4th birthday! Jackson faced scoliosis and set it straight. After celebrating his 2nd and 3rd birthdays in a cast, he would have a chance to spend his 4th emBracing a new journey. With the move to brace there is still worry his beautiful spine would simple not hold. Jackson and his family met with Dr. Hammerberg at Chicago Shriners Hospital the day before his 4th birthday. The news simply amazing....Jackson is straight!
HOPE is the emotion we each hold in fear of loss if we release it even for a brief second. We squeeze, nurture, protect hope against all else. It is tested often yet we remain steadfast in it's maintenance. With our goal to preserve hope is our need to shelter our kids from the fear that threatens it's standing in our lives. Fear is reserved for nighttime and alone time. As we enter our third year of casting, I was in need of a renewal. Picturing our beloved friends standing around their beloved boys, waiting for the moment each would make their wish and blow out the candles knowing this year wishes of the past have finally come true, was indeed my renewal.
Happy Birthday Jackson and Cameron! Your strength is contagious. May all your birthdays bring the same hope and joy as your 4th!