Friday, March 16, 2012

Welcome, Spring!

Over here in our little area of the country spring has come. The weather is changing, flowers have started to emerge and the spring breeze has filled our souls.

The changing weather has spurred my thought process a bit lately. Wyatt's a rambunctious 9 year old boy inside his little mind. Cognitively he's like any other boy, though his body doesn't work as such. His decline since last fall has been significant and has taken a lot of adjusting for us all. Our home is not designed for easy wheelchair use and we've had to adapt as we go. In the past, Wyatt would ambulate through the house and used his wheelchair for longer distances the majority of the time. Now that Wyatt's non-ambulatory and reliant on the wheelchair completely, we've been learning what works (or doesn't).

Playing in our backyard has always been something that our family enjoyed. Often times I would be planting flowers or some other busy task, while the kids were swinging on the swing set, playing with balls, bouncing in the bounce house or thinking up a new game from the depths of their imagination. But recently I've been thinking about spring, summer, fall and how playing outside will be different now. I've been racking my brain trying to come up with ways to adapt our yard, thinking of things that Wy would enjoy, while feeling included.

Last week I found a great idea for an outdoor chalkboard on the web. The instructions didn't sound too complicated and we already had the 6ft fence. So, I talked it out with our friends and by the time Bryan arrived home from work the project was in motion. It's perfect and bound to keep them happily busy. It's the first of a few outside projects that we're planning.

While the guys painted the new large chalkboards yesterday, Wy turned up the speed on his wheelchair and we let the boy go for it. He zipped, turned and maneuvered his speedy little device all around our yard, his body wildly bouncing every which direction while squealing and laughing. You couldn't help but laugh and smile with him.

We then watched as he helped Maggie pull Jilly and friend in a wagon, following behind the little red wagon in his chair, pushing gently with his foot. Priceless.

I sit here now looking at these pictures, thinking of the last several months. Just a few months ago we never thought we'd see this child laugh, squeal in delight and play as he did yesterday. The chances were very slim and the outlook was bleak. But somehow he did it again...his strength and the fight within him is something great! This boy played outside again. Yes, it was different than years past, but the joy (the smile!) was still there.

This life is an amazing thing.

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  1. You have an amazing little boy there and he is SO lucky to have you guys for parents!