The Last Six Weeks

I find it’s always hard to come back to the blog after taking a bit of a break: where do I pick up? Do I skip everything we’ve done since our last post or do I go back and cover every single little thing?

I’ve decided this time around to do a quick recap of the end of the year as we did some noteworthy things that I want to mention.

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Enjoying Nashville in the late Fall

In short, the last six weeks were a blur. Here’s what we did: Continue reading

Head of Ring Security

This past weekend, my eldest nephew, Reid, married his best friend, Katie. The wedding party included eleven beautiful bridesmaids, eleven handsome groomsmen, a very sweet flower girl, and Solly as the ring bearer.

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Solly and Reid

My heart soared when Reid and Katie asked Solly to be their ring bearer late last year, especially when I overheard Katie tell him: “Now, Solly, we don’t care how you get down the aisle. You can walk, you can ride in a wagon, you can be carried, we don’t care. We just want you to be a part of our day.” (How lucky are we that Katie is now a part of our family?!) And the inclusion didn’t stop there: every time anyone in their wedding party saw Solly at any of the wedding events and over the wedding weekend, it was “oh, hey Solly, how’s it going?” even though every single person who said hi to him knew it was very likely that Solly would just respond with a “hi” and a wave. This approach to including Solly is how I wish the world would include anyone with a physical or intellectual disability.Β  Continue reading

Our Stem Cell Therapy Experience

I’ve struggled with this post. I’ve debated on how much medical detail I should go into on a topic that I truly don’t know that much about. I also worried about sharing too much because, as I’ve learned by participating in support groups on Facebook, stem cell therapy is still very much in a research phase and, as such, it is a polarizing topic. However, because we did our own research and have had wonderful results with our first round of stem cell therapy, it’s important to share our experience. Here it is.

I never thought stem cell therapy would be an option for Sol. When I was pregnant with him, we didn’t make the necessary arrangements ahead of time to bank his cord blood. Honestly, we had a perfectly healthy pregnancy, so there didn’t seem to be a need for it.

After Solly was born and we started seeking out less traditional treatments, I kept hearing about stem cells, not entirely knowing how it worked. When I found that an ongoing clinical trial at Duke University was only for children with cerebral palsy using stem cells from their own cord blood (here are some of the results from that trial), I put the entire idea on the back burner. Around the time that I was pregnant with Bea, I heard whispers that Duke’s next stem cell study for cerebral palsy would be testing sibling cord blood, so we arranged to bank Bea’s cord blood so we would be prepared when this treatment was available to us.

Continue reading