A few months ago Addie turned 8! Every birthday is a milestone to be sure and its a great time to be somewhat reflective of the last 8 years. Addie has so fundamentally changed our lives that we can’t really remember what it was like to not worry about her and all the things that surround the special needs world. For better or worse we have been changed. I’d like to think that it’s for the better and perhaps Addie is the mirror to ensure we are becoming the best version of ourselves than we would have been with not being her parents. It’s not an easy life but somehow every day we manage by just continuing to press on. As much as there is pain and tough times in Addie’s life, there is also great joy. We find great joy when we see Addie develop in some way. With her condition, development is either severely delayed, won’t ever happen, or will happen and then seizures will cause a digression. However, its always special when she does something that she has never done before. We were on vacation this summer and for the first time inexplicably Addie used a spoon and fed herself! Liz and I watched in disbelief and then sat there looking at each other with tears in our eyes. It’s not been an easy 8 years but its our life and its beautiful and crazy all at once. If there’s one thing I can say, I can tell you that this Addie girl is the bravest and strongest girl I know. She truly is special.