On Sunday, April 23rd, we delivered a bike to Angela and her 5-year-old son Jax. Angela and her parents greeted us warmly as Jax sheepishly peeked at us through the door in the garage (Jax has trouble with change and new things)
Angela talked with excitement about the places they would ride together and how it would be so good for them both. Her parents shared her enthusiasm as well. After a great visit, we warmly embraced and said our goodbyes. But not Jax…he was still peeping through the door at us with trepidation.
As we left, I wondered if Jax would ever really get comfortable with the bike or if it would be a constant reminder in the garage of something Jax and Angela could NOT do together.
In retrospect, I underestimated Angela and her perseverance and fortitude as a mother with a child with special needs.
About a week later, I got a text from Angela with excitement saying, “HE IS SITTING ON IT”. She said they put foam mats on the bike to make the seat bigger and the quilt over the mat. Angela said Jax is playing on the bike in the garage!
My heart SWELLED WITH JOY as I thought about Angela and her role as a mother with a child with special needs. She was not giving up. She was working at Jax’s pace and celebrating steps along the way with us.
Angela is remarkable and certainly one of the strongest and most determined mothers I know. She is not unlike so many mothers with special needs children who move mountains DAILY for their children.
She is a true hero and someone I respect deeply.
Last week Angela sent me this VIDEO of her and Jax on their Blessing Bike with a text in all caps saying “HE DID IT” – I could feel the JOY through my phone as I read those words.
And I cried a bit…
Angela never gave up.
She kept at it until she found a way for Jax to ride the bike with her. The final solution was 2 stacked mats, so he had an elevated footrest that fit perfectly in the footwell.
If you watch the video, you can see Angela ring her bell as Jax rings his bell immediately afterward.
Mother and son celebrating a huge step for them both.
What an honor to know them.