Rebecca’s Story: By Julie Cristal

Where do I start! 

My beautiful, happy and healthy daughter Rebecca is an amazing, 10-year-old little girl.  She has what we call “Rebecca Syndrome” because no doctor can give us a clear understanding of exactly what her diagnosis is – but honestly, it doesn’t even matter anymore.

She is “verbally challenged” but that does not slow her down in attempts to get her voice heard and her point known!  She continues to learn and grow with Speech Therapy and I know one of these days that will no longer be a barrier for her.

She has few physical limitations but over the last few years she started to have issues walking, bending over, etc. because of how tight her legs were.  For as long as I can remember, she could not stand like you or I could.  She was always on her toes hunched over–which started to impact her daily activities.  In October, we had tendon lengthening surgery done, and OMG, it has made a huge difference.  I watch her every day and get so excited just to see her stand in one place without having to hold on, to be able to bend over at the waist and to pick something up – or even to squat down!  And just yesterday I captured an amazing, heartfelt video of our little girl dancing and singing to music on her brother’s ITouch.  If I can share a video, I will do just that.  It was an amazing thing to watch.  She LOVES to dance and she LOVES music, and to see her able to enjoy it yesterday like she did was amazing.

So much has changed for us over the last few years.  At the age of 2 she stopped sleeping and would instead scream.  When we put her into a big girl bed thinking that would help, she would then lay on the floor and kick the door until someone came in.  At the age of 8 we finally bought her new Tent Bed and everyone’s lives have changed!  SHE LOVES IT!!!  She goes to bed on her own – mommy doesn’t have to sleep with her anymore… And she sleeps in on weekends – which means so does everyone else!!!  For so many years I was getting 4 hours of sleep a night – and now we are all sleeping!!!!!

My daughter is just such an amazing little girl – and just because she has disabilities does not mean our life is horrible – she has made us all who we are and given us the strength to move on and grow!  People tell me I’m so amazing because I can handle being a parent of a special needs child with such grace – but honestly she has made me this parent.

She is loving, happy, healthy and honestly just wants to be like any other kid.  Her disabilities do not stop her – so why should they stop me!  She is the most popular kid in school – which shows me she truly is an amazing little girl – with an amazing heart and the best personality!

A mom (and dad) could not ask for anything more!

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