Florida | “The Picture of Heroes”



“One of my best friends has twin boys, Chase and Conner. Both boys were born with cerebral palsy however, Chase has a more severe form. He is amazing. He is intelligent and funny! He has endured multiple surgeries: dorsal rhizotomy, heel cord lengthening, hip osteotomies, Botox injections… And yet he still, is always smiling, taking his walker in to visit the elderly in nursing homes with his mom, and cracking jokes! And, he makes all A’s in advanced classes in middle school! I know how hard he works to just try to feed himself or get himself dressed. And, walking, well that’s an exhausting endeavor. But he keeps trying. I know he gets so frustrated in the body he was given… But he is an inspiration not only to me, but to everyone who meets him.

And the little old ladies LOVE him when he strolls in with his walker! His whole family are my heroes. The pain they go through every day and the struggle makes me appreciate all the little things I take for granted, like putting on socks! His mom, Lisa, is tireless in fighting for both boys to be the best they can be and I am amazed by her deep love for both of them. The photo I attached is one of Chase this week during physical therapy. He is wearing a Therasuit to help him learn to use muscles he doesn’t normally use correctly. It is exhausting work as you can see by the look of concentration on his face!


The picture of Chase and I.  He calls it “ The Picture of Heroes of Heroes.”  I asked it him why he called it that and he said it was because he was my hero and Oakley, his canine assistance dog, is his hero!  Chase is an identical, mirror image, twin.  Both boys were born with cerebral palsy which is essentially a brain injury that occurs during child birth that deprives the brain of oxygen resulting in injury.  Chase has a bit more severe form than his twin.  He has what is called spastic diplegia.  His mom is my best friend.  Their whole family has been through so much in fighting for Chase to walk.  Chase has endured 6 operations on his spine and legs. In the last photo I sent, he had just undergone achilles tendon surgery and where he was in casts on both legs for over a month.  In the photo, he was in a therasuit relearning, for the umpteenth time, how to use his muscles again.  He is my hero because he never gives up.  

We take for granted the Little things-  like tying our shoes, or picking up things off the floor. He works so hard just to walk.   He wears braces on both legs and walks with a walker.  He is in 8th grade and is brilliant!  Most people have a misconception about kids with cerebral palsy.  They think that because their bodies don’t work well, their brain must not work well either.  Chase is in honors classes and making all A’s!  He has difficulty writing so he has to remember everything  without writing it down!  All those math calculations, he has to do in his head! He is amazing. Chase never gives up and is always positive. Oakley is Chase’s hero because Oakley had to work hard at Canine Assistance in order to learn how to help Chase.  He can open and close doors, grab things that fall on the floor, and bring things to Chase! ” 


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