Happy Friday All! Today I want to share with you about an amazing cause that I would LOVE for you all to help out with. A good friend of mine from high school, Maria, met the man of her dreams, got married, & started a beautiful family after we graduated. I remember being SO happy for her as she looked so happy herself. Every time I see pictures of her children, I melt.
They are adorable & I am so happy for her! I saw a post she made one day about her son Colten and I couldn’t help but reach out to her for permission to help share this message. You see, Maria and her family are currently fundraising to get colten a Service Dog & I am asking that if you feel called to this message, please donate to help this cause! I will let Maria share Colten’s story below:
(look at those eyes!!)
“The idea of having a beautiful, chubby, and healthy baby seems to simply be the norm. When I became pregnant with my second baby I expected nothing less than and little carbon copy of my perfect little first born. I was a second time mom; surely I knew what to expect, but life threw me something I was neither expecting nor would change for the world. I am a mom to a handsome, smart, funny, and sneaky little boy… Who just happens to have special needs. “ Special Needs” is a term I never understood until the day it labeled my son. Despite the number of diagnoses and difficulties my son has, we still only describe him with one label… Colten.
Since the day Colten was born he has made me shed countless tears, attend more doctor exams then I could ever dream of remembering, swear at a number of medical / insurance professionals, but in return he has given more love than I think could ever deserve. Helping Colten live life with multiple diagnoses is truly a blend of difficult and joy. Severe Autism and Epilepsy are obviously a constant presence in our daily routine and ability to function. Colten isn’t always able to live at the level we’d love for to be able to. What child doesn’t deserve to live a happy and safe childhood? Yet, for Colten these things aren’t always possible, and they are nearly never safe. Colten’s medical and developmental short comings make it hard for us to give him the childhood he deserves. The constant fear for Colten’s safety is a struggle I wish upon no mother. Whether it be seizures, running away, pica, or darting into traffic… We’ve been living life in fear. However, that’s not us, that’s not how we want to live life nor how we plan to teach our son to live his life. So instead of letting the constant fear take us down we choose to rise above .
We have made it our mission to help our son reach heights that have been deemed unreachable. We refuse to take the predictions and quality of life that have been predetermined . We want to make son son’s future his own. We want his future to be a reflection of what he chooses it to be. My son may have special needs, but he deserves the right to “ achieve “ just as any other child. Childhood is suppose to be the best time of a person’s life. Colten should have the same experiences … Yet, we were left with the looming question of how? How do with make this possible while keeping Colten safe?
Of all the answers we’ve searched for this one was the easiest to discover. A SERVICE DOG. Holy cow how didn’t we think of this before? Finally , a chance to give our son a shot at freedom . A chance for him to stride along side his siblings and be an equal :A chance to go in public with out fear or struggle: A chance for our family to sleep at night without worrying about an escape: A chance for us to live as a family. Words could never begin to describe how much this dog would mean to our family or to our son’s future. We have never stopped fighting for Colten and we don’t plan on giving up now.
Colten’s story will never go viral or change a million lives. However, he has changed our family in so many ways. Colten has taught me life is to short to dwell. That every achievement can move mountains,,, whether it’s by avalanche or simply by chipping away. I have grown to appreciate every ounce of good health, every accomplishment, and every moment that doesn’t make me want to pull my hair out,,, and sometimes even the ones that do. I am a mother to a special needs boy… I am mother to Colten!”
How you can help this amazing cause for Colten:
- Check out the You Caring site where you can donate to his cause [HERE].
- Check out their upcoming benefit in Pittsburgh [here].
- Continue to pray for their family & support them through this journey.
My heart goes out to you Maria & I am inspired by your amazing strength.
Be true to you,