Ashley's Story

She will leave fingerprints all over your heart


I smiled

This afternoon my smile was so big, so wide, so unexpected it couldn't be wiped from my face. I could feel how stupid it must have looked, but there was NO erasing it. I think it was probably the very first smile I have REALLY smiled in months.

I walked into the therapy/play room to find Ashley Kate about 2 feet from where I had left here. Dave was home for lunch and so I asked him if he had moved her, "No," he answered. Hmmm... I went and found my mom and and asked had she moved her, "No," she answered. Well...I know where I had set her on the rug and I could see she was no longer there so I lingered in the doorway and decided to just watch her and see if possibly I had lost my mind or just maybe she had moved herself. It only took a few minutes for that smile to cross my face. She in fact was moving! MOVING herself in the "Ashley" way that she once moved around our entire house. I was so in shock! I walked in and offered a few small toys. Once she reached out for them I purposely placed them about 4 or 5 feet away from her. Sure enough in a moment or two she took off. She didn't even look proud of herself. It was as if she were doing what she had always been able to do except for the fact that SHE HAS NOT HAD THE STRENGTH OR ABILITY to do it in months. However, today she did. She felt good enough, strong enough, and able enough to pick up where she left off in May. I was so blessed. So incredibly blessed in that moment. She moved another time or two and then she was finished. The moments passed and she didn't move for the rest of the day, but I don't even care about that. What I am rejoicing over is that my daughter is getting her life back. In the smallest of ways she is getting back to LIVING instead of dying. I don't have the words to even describe what that feels like.

So, I know that she is no longer standing, I know she can't take steps along the parallel bars anymore, I know that she doesn't walk in her walker, BUT she can move when she wants to and to this momma's heart that is HUGE. Its miraculous. Its encouraging. Its a blessing. Its gives me hope that someday the other skills she has lost will return to her as well.

Oh, how I needed something good to happen. I really needed something to touch my heart in the way her tiny scoots touched me this afternoon. Its been a long road to where I am at this time and the road ahead seems so long and so difficult and so unmanageable. Today, I rejoiced. I really did. It was so amazing it earned a knuckle bump from her daddy to her mommy and it spread smiles across our faces in a way that little else has.

Just thought I would share. Goodnight and God bless. Trish


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