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When you have already been blessed to be the parents of two beautiful children and, yet once again graced to be the parents of another gorgeous baby girl, you could not ask for anything more in your life. When you hold that sweet baby girl, you realize that with her too, you would do all that you could: to give her the life that she deserves…
For us, it seemed like everything happened all at once. Alexis, our daughter, was admitted for failure to thrive, that was six days in the hospital. Then, exactly one month later, she had a partial grand mal seizure of her right side. So, another stint in the hospital for us. Your spouse and you are exhausted and scared to death about the health of your child. You wish that you could take it all from her. Why does it have to be her? She is so small, how will she ever be able to overcome this? She is so beautiful, sweet and innocent. Why?
Then the delay is noticed: a delay with her development. She was 9 months old and had never rolled over, she was unable sit up unsupported, unable to get up on “on all fours” from her belly. Crawling, walking, you name it; it was delayed. Her motor skills, fine or otherwise: delayed. Speech: delayed. Okay, you say to yourself, what next… Well, for us, for Team Williams, along with lots of doctors’ visits, it was First Steps.
Wow, what an amazing resource for children everywhere with developmental needs! I believe that we have blessed with the absolute best team that Alexis could have ever been given. She has three amazing therapists who work with her. They are so great with her. Though, not realizing it in the beginning, they have been a great resource for my husband and I too. I can talk with them about any doubts or worries that we are having, and bounce ideas off of them. They listen and have never made us feel like we are just some crazy, over-reacting parents. They have been so encouraging and are so helpful with showing us things that we can do to help Alexis. They stay in contact with us: from our team coordinator, checking in to see how services are going, to all of our therapists, reminding us of appointments and how Alexis’s session went for that particular day. They contact us if they have any concerns about her and/or her environment. In a lot of ways, they have been our eyes and ears at her daycare.
Lastly, there is their relationships with Alexis. They are not just there to do their “job,” they enjoy being around her too. They love her. For that, we are forever grateful. They will all hold a special place in our hearts. We are so appreciative of all their hard work and dreading the day that we no longer have them coming to work with our Sweet Pumpkin. I cannot even begin to imagine where we would be without First Steps. More importantly, I shudder to think where Alexis would be if First Steps had not been an available organization/resource for her. We have gone from a life for Alexis that was full of doubts, to a life full of possibilities. First Steps and the therapists that have been working with her have a lot to do with that. They will be missed.
Thank you for all your support and hard work,
Justin, Sohnna, Hunter, Kaitie and Alexis Williams
We are so thankful for First Steps. Our therapists have become like family and they have helped Wesley grow and succeed in ways we never could have anticipated. They challenged him without discouraging him. They have shared in our joy as Wesley has hit milestones. They have encouraged me when I was having doubts about his progress. These early intervention services have helped and will continue to help Wesley succeed in school and life.
He was born with CHARGE Syndrome. He has had 5 surgeries including heart surgery at one and a half months old. At five months of age, we started with First Steps. Liam was very behind and had low muscle tone. Now he is close to sitting up on his own and about to start crawling. Without First Steps, I wouldn’t of know what tools and exercises to use to get Liam to where he is today.
The day our daughter Madeline was born began a journey for our family that we never had imagined. We often tell people that Maddie was born with something extra special, something so small, yet has had such an impact on our lives. Madeline was diagnosed at birth with Trisomy 21 or as it is more commonly known, Down Syndrome. Shortly after birth, Maddie was admitted to the NICU and she remained there for nine days. During this time, our family had many decisions to make both in moving forward with her care as well as educating ourselves on Down Syndrome and what it would mean for our family. We were met with devastating statistics and specialists preparing us that our daughter would be severely delayed in her development and may potentially not be able to do the things we take for granted everyday. It was beyond heartbreaking as a parent to hear that your child possibly would not be able to walk until age three. We quickly realized the importance of early intervention to progress her development and unlock Maddie’s potential and set a firm foundation for the rest of her life. It was at this time that First Steps came into our lives, and what a blessing it has been!
We were placed with First Steps while in the hospital, and within a couple of weeks of being home, our daughter was receiving her first therapy services. It was at this time in working with Maddie’s therapy team and service coordinator we realized what an amazing organization this is. Not only was her team providing the therapy she needed, but they also worked side by side with my husband empowering us with the tools we needed to help Maddie. After a few months, we were quickly able to see Maddie growing and developing. Each time she reached a milestone we all celebrated together, knowing how hard Maddie and we worked to achieve a new skill. We were amazed when our daughter started walking before her second birthday!
Our therapist and service coordinator were not only there in the sense of providing services, but also giving us the tools and resources in planning for Maddie’s future. As a parent, it is hard to describe the joy in seeing others invest so much of themselves into the success of your child. First Steps has been so much more than therapy to our family, but has given Matt and I hope in unlocking Maddie’s potential.
It is hard to believe that we are beginning our transition to school, and I firmly believe that Maddie would not be where she is today without First Steps, her service coordinator and her amazing therapy team.