Saturday, June 7, 2008

CP (Cerebral Palsy)

Cerebral Palsy?? Are you sure? What do you mean by mild? What exactly is that?

OH MY GOD!! What do we do now?

These are just a few of my first thoughts that first day we went back to visit Dr. Hille, his neurologist, after we “thought” we had been released.

I always “knew” something was wrong! I didn’t have a clue what it was called. I did know that my beautiful third child was completely different than his older brothers.

The two older boys have always been like night and day, very different. One quiet, laid back, very shy (in case you can’t figure out which one this would be, it is Brett-lol) and the other…well, NOT all of these! Shane (the one that is NOT) is my go-getter that would never know a stranger and never stops talking.

As different as the first two were, I knew Cole was different in his own way. Bless his sweet little heart!

I remember when Cole was in the NICU and he NEVER (I promise, never) cried and we wanted so badly (as my dear friend Jennifer is so quick to remind me) to hear him cry. I guess this seemed like a sign of normalcy for us. Like he would be okay if he acted like the other new babies.

Let me tell you, we sure questioned what in the world we were thinking as soon as we were released and brought him home. He literally screamed all the time! God, what am I doing wrong? I tried to nurse him and there was no way he was doing that (I thought it was me but realized later that it was due to the low muscle tone in his mouth).

Okay – back to the CP… so I was in such shock after hearing those words for the first time! I will admit, I didn’t have a clue what CP was. My single first thought …well, to be honest, I don’t know my ‘first’ thought. I had such a flood of thoughts and emotions, I could never put into words. This is why I want to bring awareness to whomever I can by telling Cole’s story!

Cerebral Palsy is damage or trauma to the brain! This affects every 1 in 278 people. It can be caused by many different things but Cole’s was caused by the lack of oxygen during his birth. It can range in tremendous degrees from mild to severe and can affect each person differently. Cole has not been diagnosed with the ‘type’ of CP he has but he does have low muscle tone in his trunk, neck and mouth with spasticity in his hands, arms and legs.

Cole is 15 months old now and he cannot sit unassisted, crawl, stand, walk, or talk. They cannot tell us for sure if he will ever be able to do any of these things. This is why we will do everything we possibly can and know of to get him help to try to learn these things.


  1. Leanna, this is all too familiar! I can relate in every aspect to your thoughts and emotions when you first learned of Cole's CP. You travel the same path I am on and God is right behind us.

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