I have spent some time with this Mama that I am going to write about below, but I have never met her son. However, she is a local Mighty Mom and so I know a little about him based on her posts. This is what I imagine her son, Tanner, to be like...
Spina Bifida is a neural tube defect that develops early on in pregnancy. Star learned of possible complications at her 20 weeks ultrasound appointment, and these complications were confirmed at 24 weeks. In the beginning, Star blamed herself a lot since nobody could give her a reason why this happened to Tanner. Spina Bifida effects 1 out of every 800 infants, and though there are suspicions as to its cause, nobody is really positive as to why it happens. Star has told me that she's done all the tests and nobody can tell her why this happened to Tanner, so she's starting to feel better about it, that it wasn't her fault and that she is not to blame.
In the beginning Tanner spent a lot of time at doctor's appointments, sometimes 3-5 a week. Tanner is 3 now and his family has settled into a comfortable routine including therapies and preschool, of course he still has the occasional doctor appointment. He is also learning more and more how to get around in his Quickie Zippie Zone wheelchair. He recently started using a reverse walker and is getting pretty good at using it!
Tanner has a little brother, Connor, who was born just about 6 months ago, and Star says that Tanner really likes to help her as much as he can with the baby. He completely adores his little brother!
As Tanner gets older, his personality is starting to develop more and more. He loves all the typical boy things, Thomas the Train, Spiderman, etc. And of course, playing in the dirt!! His disability is purely physical, and he is a sharp-witted kid with all sorts of crazy ideas and questions. Tanner's diagnosis doesn't define him. Star says that through this experience she has really learned to overlook other people's differences and see past what someone looks like. She knows that eventually Tanner will realize he's different, and he may even struggle with the fact that he's in a wheelchair, but she also realizes that he is something special, and she hopes that society can also look past his wheelchair and see the wonderful child/person he is. Not only has he changed their lives, but Star hopes that he is able to change many many more.