Almost four years ago, two of my best friends welcomed to this world their second son. Now, where most of us parents have all the joys that motherhood (or fatherhood) bring in that miraculous moment you meet your new child, theirs was filled with uncertainty. Their son was born with the condition spina bifida. Basically, a portion of his spine never fully closed and his nerves were developing outside of his body. Before, Ciarlo (pronouned Char-loh...like the Italian word 'ciao') was a day old, he was whisked away to surgery where they proceeded to close the hole. This little man either lost, or never had feeling below his hips due to the damaged spinal cord. Without getting too detailed, Ciarlo's life has seen its fair share of surgeries and trips to CHOP (Children's Hospital of Philadelphia) with many overnight stays.
Though Ciarlo has a long road ahead of him, this little guy has far surpassed any of our expectations thus far. He is a light to our lives and loves to be the center of attention. Ciarlo is incredibly smart and will live a full life and be able to accomplish anything. He has a gift to make you smile and His doctors are constantly amazed at his abilities, as am I. One thing is for certain though,children are a gift. No matter what the circumstances. Ciarlo is a gift to all those he meets. His parents are incredible examples of love and perseverance. They model grace under pressure and their little boys are lucky to have them. Not all parents are as fortunate as they are, though. Just last weekend I heard of a little boy around the same age as Ciarlo who had many complications and sadly passed away. I cannot imagine the heartache his parents are going through. My family, on a personal note, was affected by this condition as well when my dad's sister died from it shortly after birth. We never met her, but my dad always talked about his baby sister Anna Maria. So, for Ciarlo, this little boy, my aunt, and all the families affected by this condition my family is participating in this year's annual Walk and Roll for Spina Bifida. This is a local organization that helps local families of children with Spina Bifida.
I know it's very short notice (I'm definitely behind the 8 ball this year) but if you find it in your heart to donate, please click HERE. Donation Page
Or use the widget below.
Here are two pics of Ciarlo enjoying the new ramp my husband and Ciarlo's father built for him to get into their treehouse...Look at that smile!! He's a champ in that little wheelchair!
Ciarlo and my littlest girl at the playground.
He asked me to take him down the slide at Chik-Fil-A...how could I say no to that little face???
Hmm...yeah...I'm the queen of selfies...it's the only way I get into pictures...lol