Children with Autism, Downs Syndrome, Learning Disorders, Mental Illnesses and other disabilities often face overwhelming challenges. Help us train their parents and strengthen their families.
My son Sam got encephalitis when he was 15 months. His illness started as a status seizure that completely took us by surprise because he had been perfectly healthy. He was flown to Children's Hospital in Oakland for treatment.
Our lives had been forever changed. My 4-year-old daughter was often left with a sitter while we were at the hospital. We were informed that Sam would be part of the 15% that would not recover fully. He was deaf, blind, and could not eat, roll over or do much of anything. He had to be taught to do all these things; Sam went through a complete infancy again. After 3 months, he left the hospital crawling. He got a round of applause from the hospital staff when we returned for a follow-up visit and he walked in.
Just home from the hospital a Parent Advisor from Matrix, who had been through a similar situation, contacted me. She understood what we were going through, helped me feel less isolated and gave us hope.
Sam is now a very happy 11-year-old with developmental disabilities. He goes to a special day class close to home and our family is once again whole.