“Charlotte now has a safe spot from which she can observe and absorb the world”
We are so grateful that we received the grant from Inclusive Kids because the stroller we purchased has given the family the freedom to take Charlotte to so many more places. It has opened up more of the world for Charlotte.
The size and design of the stroller allows me to push her down the aisles of supermarkets and through the checkouts. I can fold it up and put it in the boot of the car with ease, so I can take her to parks and other places more often. Because it is more open at the sides than the mobility device she previously had, she can reach out to her surroundings and feel more involved. Importantly, her sister can hold her hand and walk alongside her when she gets pushed. The design is so safe and stable that I can allow her sister to push her, which she loves to do. When Charlotte is sitting in the stroller she is at the same eye-level as her other children her age, so she can feel closer to them when they are with her. All of these aspects allow Charlotte to feel more a part of her surroundings and more included with other people. Yet she feels safe and cosy in her own place and not threatened or over-whelmed.
We would have had to save for a long time to buy the stroller ourselves, as there are numerous costs we have to cater for. Having this stroller at this stage of Charlotte’s development has opened up new experiences for her and she is thriving on them. It gives her a safe spot from where she can observe and absorb the world. Charlotte loves the outdoors, and she now can reach out and touch the leaves of plants in the park. She is fascinated by the feel of them and the sound of them as she holds them in her hand. She has taught me so much – she shows me how to appreciate all the little things. It is not only the smell of the roses we should have time for – there is so much to appreciate including the leaves! Charlotte has this way of noticing the things that the rest of us might overlook.
We were able to take Charlotte with us on holidays last year because we had this stroller. We have a photograph from that holiday of her smiling at the camera while sitting in the stroller. This is the first time she has smiled at the camera without having to be tickled. It is priceless to see that.
When you have a child with special needs your world revolves around their abilities and what they can cope with. You have to let go of your own dreams for your child, yet enable her to reach her potential. I can now get Charlotte out into the world more, where she can learn and she can teach. She has taught me so much and I believe she will teach many others.