It’s already deep in the night, looking at Jimmy’s sweet face who’s already in dream, Mary smiled delightedly. Mary tucked in the corner for Jimmy as usual and then returned to study room to go on with her doctoral thesis. Inadvertently, she looked up and saw a picture on the desk. Each time she saw this picture, many thoughts came out again and again. The picture was shot in China in 2014. That year, Jimmy was 6 years old. Without that choice to China, Jimmy may not obtain today’s life.
Jimmy was born in a happy family. Parents were well-educated. They were positive, optimistic and full of love. They had helped a lot of people, including seriously ill and disabled children. They helped others without asking for reward, however, they couldn’t image they get something reward it: Jimmy became a member of cerebral palsy group when birth due to umbilical cord around the neck and cerebral ischemia and hypoxia, which affected the normal growth and development of his brain.
In the past days, cerebral palsy and delayed motor nerve function development were just something far way from them. Who can imagine it bitterly penetrates into their lives deeply could not be moved away any more? Mary’s heart broken, but she was unable to resist.
Year after year, Jimmy grew up day by day. His movement ability was lagging behind obviously. He cannot eat sandwiches and fruits like other children; he cannot grasp the favorite toys flexibly; he cannot stand up to play with other brothers and sisters; he could only eat liquid diet every meal. Although he disgusted these tedious things, he had no choice.
Mary and her husband needed to face this unexpected challenge again. They ever argued and frustrated many times. While, in the end, they reached a good consensus, that is, work together to find the most advanced treatment for Jimmy . At the same time, with their own enthusiasm, they encouraged Jimmy to live optimistically.
To take care of Jimmy better, Mary found a job in a hospital to learn the way of a therapist. When she went home, she did the rehabilitation for Jimmy personally. In such circumstances, Mary was in great pressure. She studied with tenacious perseverance and obtained the qualifications of the rehabilitation physiotherapist and become a professional rehabilitation therapies finally. It was not enough for her, she majors in psychology doctorate continuously.
As long as she was free, she held her closest partner, her computer, to search for the latest treatment methods for cerebral palsy. She learned about many successful stem cells treatment cases for cerebral palsy kids. Through the description of these cases, many patients with cerebral palsy did get significant improvements. Stem cells are like a shining pearl in the biological field. Many developed countries like the United States, Germany, Britain, Switzerland and developing countries like China, Thailand, India, are actively engaged in stem cell research and clinical treatment. She contacted several hospitals and compared their treatment principle, effect, risks and so on. Among them, she was very satisfied with two hospitals’ answers which were very objective. But the cost was really staggering, especially the developed countries. It takes dozen years for her and her husband to save that much cost without eating and drinking. After all, they have other children at home; they also need funds to go to school.
After discussing with her husband, they shifted their focus to another hospital in Beijing, China. With frequent communication and application for special offer, they raised funds actively and finally applied passport and visa with fund-raising for their beloved son.
Before they arrived at hospital, they did not have much psychological burden, because the hospital already arranged everything. The entire itinerary, including the airport pick up and ward photos were sent to them in advance, they felt the medical team very reliable.
Dr. An made a check and assessment for Jimmy . At the time, Dr. Cheng Hongbin, who just returned from abroad, also participated in this surgical plan: One head stereotactic surgery plus twice lumbar puncture.
Mary and her husband got nervous right after Jimmy entered the surgery room. They tried to calm down however all their hopes relay on this surgery. One hour’s operation, they felt had stay waiting for centuries. When Jimmy came out from operating room. Mary could not control her tears slides down and said to Jimmy "Thanks God, you are safe now. You are really a brave boy, daddy and mommy love you!”
In the next few days after the operation, Mary couples, just like other patients’ family members, cannot wait to see the child's improvement. Dr. Cheng Hongbin, who has applied more than 6,000 stem cell treatments for cerebral palsy patients, said frankly he was not 100% sure for the improvement. Every patient is different, some of them may need a month or two or even longer time to witness the changes. Mary still wished to see the changes quickly, faster, even faster.
With earnest expectation, Jimmy did get some changes. He could speak clearer; his hands could grab things more flexible; his chewing ability strengthened; One day in the morning, Mary fed Jimmy some vegetables carefully. Jimmy enjoyed and swallowed. This was the first time for Jimmy to eat vegetables after his birth. It was so great!
Jimmy is a brave boy, he accepts rehabilitation according to his parents and doctor’s recommendations. All the efforts get returns today's Jimmy. Jimmy starts to practice walking with leg braces already.
For other normal kids, they are not able to experience Jimmy’s hardships for his first step. It takes more than eight years to witness this dramatic moment. The journey is still very long. We all believe that Jimmy move forward step by step with smiles.
With colorful dreams and a family full of love, what to be feared? No. Nothing.