Wednesday, June 17, 2015

The Gift of the Ladybug

Shortly after Grace was diagnosed with INAD, one of her very first physical therapists, Cindy White, gave us a special gift. It was a book called "The Gift of the Ladybug," written by Carole M. Amber.

For me, it's one of those books like "Love You Forever," that I can't read without crying (or sobbing), but the message is great. And it's quickly become one of our favorite books.

The author lost her son, TJ, before he turned two, and the book is a tribute to him.  In it, she tells the story of two horses, who meet, fall in love and get married. They find out they are going to have a baby, and they are so excited when he comes that they don't notice he is smaller than the other babies.  

The horses end up discovering that their baby is indeed a ladybug, and not a horse.  At first, the horses worry because they don't eat the same things that ladybugs do, and they're sad that their little ladybug will never be able to gallop the way they will.  And then they find out that ladybugs have much shorter lives than horses do.

Although the horses are sad at first, they learn to embrace the little ladybug.  They learn to eat bugs, smile, and "even catch a glimpse at what it feels like to fly" through their little ladybug's eyes.

The book has truly touched our hearts, and though we pray every day for a miracle that would keep our Grace from being a ladybug, we have learned to embrace each day for the miracle that it is.  We try harder to smile and laugh more with her each day. We recognize that she might not be able to do things that the other kids her age can do, but we celebrate the joy that she brings into our lives each and every day.

As a reminder of this, we picked out a ladybug pattern for Grace's newest pair of AFOs (leg braces).  They are white with bright green straps (my favorite color) and feature brightly colored flowers and little ladybugs, a reminder of the special gift she is to us.  

Grace's new ladybug AFOs.
We picked up her new braces in St. Louis this week, and she's already wearing them.  They provide her a little more support, and she's even able to stand a bit better than before.  As an added bonus, we took her two previous pairs of braces back with us, where they will be donated on a mission trip to other children in need.  We feel so fortunate that they will be able to be used again.

Grace standing in her Kid Walk with her new AFOs.
Although I don't read "The Gift of the Ladybug" to Grace each time we lay down for a nap (like I said, it makes me cry), but I do try to read it often.  And I try to smile at her, my special little ladybug, a true gift.


1 comment:

  1. We must take each day we have with our loved ones and realize only God knows how long we will be blessed with them in this world. I know it is very difficult but if we live each day to the fullest perhaps we will have no regrets. Grace is truly a beautiful child who warms those around her. Her smile contagious. May God bless your family every day with his amazing love & grace.