Today is the anniversary of Conrad’s accident. 9 years and 53 “Conrad updates” later, we continue to celebrate his life and continued progress.
If you read/re-read our January posts from 2005-2012, you will notice a trend:
- Gratitude for his life (he was given only a 5% chance of survival)
- Celebration of the successes
- Intentions for the future
Some may wonder, how do we find the motivation to continue the same basic resolution year after year?
Although the steps have been small, the accomplishments are tangible. He is more alert and is interacting with his environment more noticeably and consistently. He has progressed so much further than we were told was possible and we are certain that his potential is unlimited.
Our assurance is fueled by the fact that there is still so much to learn about the brain. We plan to continue to push the confines that are bound by the lack of knowledge.
Last year we helped launch the first research project to assess anoxic brain injury in pediatric near drowning cases. Families have traveled from Utah, Oregon and Wisconsin to participate. This year we plan to build on the findings of this project to launch additional research and identify treatments/therapy targeted to the areas of the brain with the most potential to recover. We plan to partner with other organizations to expand our reach and unite efforts that will benefit Conrad and other near drowning victims. There are many families like ours who are defying odds and pushing boundaries.
This year we are also developing a consistent communication system for Conrad. He communicates with his family, caregivers, schoolmates using a variety of methods such as jesters, sounds, even voice “buttons” he pushes to activate. However, they are all different and those who are not as familiar with Conrad find it more difficult to interact with him and interpret his responses. We will help Conrad clearly indicate preferences and desires. We also want to test Conrad’s knowledge so we can more effectively teach and challenge him.
Thank you for your continued support. YOU, the friends and family that provide the ideas, words of encouragement and the cheers of progress bolster our efforts.
Who knows what we can accomplish in another 9 years. Thank you for sharing in our optimism.