Some people are born unique, different from others. But that does not mean it can stop them from reaching their goals and becoming who they dream to be.
Meet Ben, your more than an average high schooler, taking advanced classes. His favorite subjects are science and film. He not only enjoys writing, directing films and musicals but adds a medical twist to them too. The only thing that sets him apart from his classmates is that Ben has Cerebral Palsy (CP).
Cerebral Palsy is a physical disability that affects movement and posture that is often caused by a brain injury or malformation. It is the most common physical disability in childhood affecting over 17 million people worldwide. In day-to-day life, Ben uses a power chair and must overcome physical obstacles, but CP does not stop him from changing the world.
Ben says “Cerebral Palsy is a physical disability. Judge me for who I am not my condition. Speech can be hard for me, but I have the mental capability of any able-bodied person. I am important, unique, and have big plans to make a difference in this world”.
Ben’s journey first began at the age of eight months. Doctors diagnosed him with PVL, Periventricular Leukomalacia, a diagnosis that impacts the nerve cells that control movement making it challenging to move as a baby grows. Before the age of two, he was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy.
Victoria, Ben’s mom, says when they found out Ben’s diagnosis, “we were in shock and had no idea what the future would bring but held on tightly to all of the encouragement and support we had from friends and family. The therapy clinic became our second home where we were blessed with skilled PTs, OTs, and SLPs who helped us navigate”.
While Victoria knew this would be difficult for herself and Ben, she was ready to take on the new challenges that came her way. One of the main issues she faced was working with insurance companies and educating them on the matter that medical necessities, such as therapists and equipment, are vital. Throughout her journey with Ben, they would end up spending countless hours justifying and fighting for her son and the beneficial services he requires.
But over time, Victoria and Ben learned more about Cerebral Palsy and found some of the best community support from friends, families, and her involvement in Cerebral Palsy Awareness Transition Hope (CPATH). The non-profit offers a free Pediatric Medical Equipment Program, sports and recreational activities, grant programs, and even a fun family weekend camp.
She says, “it’s so important for families to know that they’re not alone in the journey and that others know what they’re going through. I have met some of my best friends through this journey”. Ben also enjoys educating others on the positive benefits of not only owning his service dog, named Friday but also volunteering at each CPATH event.
It was not until June of 2021 that Victoria and Ben found MGA Homecare, and they have never looked back.
Ben has two amazing nurses that support him every day. One of them is Catherine, she says “Ben is such a joy to work with every day. He has such a great sense of humor along with a very creative imagination and determination to accomplish anything he sets his mind to. He loves all things medicine and keeps me on my toes! Since I started working with Ben, he has achieved so many goals towards mobility, transfers, strength, and nutrition. I know his healthcare team, family and friends are so proud and rooting for him each step of the way.”
Both Ben and Victoria love their MGA Homecare team and could not be more grateful to have their expert assistance. Throughout their journey with MGA, they have been provided with exceptional, high-quality care and personalized services. Catherine commented that “Ben and his family have made each shift hardly feel like work. Their constant kindness and appreciation really help remind me how important our jobs as nurses really are on the home cadre scale at MGA. We make a great team.”
The Polega Family would recommend MGA Homecare in a heartbeat!
Do you have any advice for people caring for a family member with Cerebral Palsy? “Some days are hard, and life may look different than you might have envisioned, but it’s a beautiful life filled with unexpected opportunities and experiences”.
Are you in need of homecare services for your child? Contact us today!