Today, our family began to climb a mountain. Our climb is in support of World Cerebral Palsy Day and the “mountain” is actually a challenge issued by the UCP to help raise awareness and funds for people living with cerebral palsy. For more than 60 years, UCP has worked to ensure the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in every facet of society. For the next thirty days, our family will wear pedometers to count our steps in order to reach goals, summits and ultimately reach the highest peak.
We do this in honor of a very special little boy named Lucas. Lucas is my nephew, the middle child to my brother Charlie and his beautiful wife, Catherine. He’s a special little boy for many reasons, the least of which is that he has cerebral palsy. More importantly, he is special in ways only the heart can measure. He always has a smile to share, a hand to hold, and a laugh to brighten your day. He is everything that is good in the world embodied in one little boy. While Lucas is physically limited, his spirit knows no boundaries. He is truly an angel among us.
It’s not often enough that I tell Catherine and Charlie how much I admire both of them and how proud I am to share this journey of raising a special needs child with them. Their endurance in the face of challenges makes climbing this mountain worth every step. They are exceptional parents who inspire me at every turn.
As Andy Rooney once said, “I’ve learned that everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you’re climbing it.” Here’s to the climb and especially to Lucas.