When we arrived in Michigan on Thursday late/Friday early (hello 1am), we were in for a big weekend, full of surprises. The first surprise came at 1.30am when my mom took us out into her garage. Seeing it set up with tables and items laid out, I was confused, perhaps cloudy from the late hour. My first thought was that the grandkids had been playing ‘store’. She told me to turn around and I saw a banner which said ‘Fund raiser for Sebastian’s therapies and meds’. I turned to Ali and burst into tears. Over the next two days my mom would collect over $500 from the sale and donations. All while doing last minute prep for the baby shower she was also throwing me on Saturday. On Friday afternoon Seb hung out with his grandma in his walker during the sale and met so many generous folks. One family with a three year old daughter spent time talking with Seb and then donated $100. I burst out crying then too. But the fund raising didn’t end there. When we arrived at Shannon’s birthday celebration at their restaurant, she presented me with over $300 from collections they did that week at Riley’s Roadside. And a birthday cake for Sebastian in a joint birthday celebration. The blessings just kept flowing. Although Sebastian was tired from his late night before and a full day of visiting, he had so much fun with his cousins. And this is why I wanted to move to Toronto. Being closer to family is priceless.
Silently we’ve been struggling since we moved in November. (Moving every year or two or even three, ain’t cheap.) We just keep truckin’ on and hoping things will balance out. Never could we have imagined the blessings and generosity of loved ones – friends and family – in our lives over the past two weeks. With these donations Sebastian will get the (private physical) therapy he has not been able to get consistently for the past several months, as well as pay for the hippotherapy he is currently getting. These donations also enable us to add new therapies (like osteopathy) and help pay for medicines and new diet supplements. Because we are finally on a cycle of OT and PT through the government health plan, Sebastian has been receiving (minimal) therapy once a week. But we want more for our son. I cannot truly express how thankful I am for the generosity and kindness of family, friends and strangers we experienced this weekend.
In March we became eligible to apply for benefits for Sebastian which will help pay for his private therapies. We should hear from them within 90 days. We also have organizations like Easter Seals and Ontario Federation for Cerebral Palsy which have helped us in the past with things like equipment (Seb’s walker) and Hippotherapy. But these organizations generally run out of funding by Spring after stretching it out to many families in need. We have also chosen to send Sebastian to a special pre-school program which is not free. Although we know that this takes away from his therapy funds, we believe that the experience and learning he receives at school is invaluable. Because we want the best for our son, that involves balancing life and therapy.