Saturday, October 1, 2011

Spina Bifida Awareness: Meet Nathaniel!

First up this month is my precious son, Nathaniel.

Meet Nathaniel!
Nathaniel is 11 years old, and was born with Spina Bifida. I found out at my 16 week ultrasound about the Spina Bifida. If you have not read Nathaniel’s story of overcoming before, I encourage you to go HERE, and read the story. It amazes me EVERY TIME I remember it, and I lived it! (for an easier read, read the story from oldest post to newest post)

Eleven years ago I began I journey that I was TERRIFIED of. Mostly I was terrified because no one had given me any HOPE that my baby would have a good life.
Nathaniel, June 30, 2000: 2 days old
But you know what? They were ALL wrong!

As scared as I was of Spina Bifida, I have since learned it's just a different way of life. 

Nathaniel on his first birthday, just hours out of major surgery
But it is still life at its fullest!

Nathaniel, ~18 months old
Little did I know eleven years ago today what an AMAZING child Nathaniel would be.
Take That! Walking on the beach at 3.5 with NO walker. He had JUST graduated from the walker.
Little did I know that he would teach me far more than I could EVER teach him!

TEN laps at his school Walk A Thon in 2008, just DAYS after being released from 4 months in his wheelchair!
Little did I know how his strength and character and charisma would overcome SO MUCH!
The little guy I was told over and over again would not walk.... playing soccer in all of his glory!
Little did I know how much DEEPER my walk with the Lord would become because of such a little guy.

Nat powering through yet another surgery, April 2010

Little did I know just HOW MUCH the Lord was blessing me when he gave me Nathaniel James Soares to be my son.  Thank you Lord for blessing me with such an amazing son and teaching me so much through him, Spina Bifida and all!

Nat doing his FAVORITE thing... surfing! Summer 2011
Many would say that our life is hard.
I would counter that we all have a journey that we are on, and many of those journeys are hard, ours is no different.

I will be the first to admit that we deal with a LOT, but there is never a promise that we won't deal with a lot in this life. I feel blessed to be dealing with it for such an amazing child!

Nathaniel has had to deal with many things throughout his life that I wouldn't have wished on him, yet each time we go through something we ALL grow stronger and learn from it. Nathaniel is a INTEGRAL part of our family and we love him for being him!

To us, Spina Bifida is a part of our life, but there is SO MUCH MORE to our life than just Spina Bifida! We live for love, for joy and for family, just like anyone else!

I hope you enjoyed meeting Nathaniel, and head back tomorrow to meet someone new!


Jamie said...

I LOVE it! You have an amazing boy there :)

Tiffany said...

This was beautiful!! Made me cry! Like you, Logan strengthened my faith as well! <3