Dear Caleb

Dear Caleb,

I wanted to write to you to let you know exactly how I felt today while watching you in therapy. Most weeks, the hour goes by quickly and I’m tasked with keeping you in a good mood while integrating various exercises. Some sessions are more productive than others. Months ago we first worked on rolling, then sitting, transitioning, then rocking on all fours to finally crawling and now we’re taking steps! For a long, grueling hour you will your little legs to work against your brain. Your steps are small, your legs criss-cross in front of one another and sometimes, rather than make forward progress, you simply appear to march in place. You try to keep a smile on your face, but I can tell when you’ve had enough. You start to fuss and whine. You act like you’ve forgotten how to move your feet in protest. We encourage you, sing to you and today I actually cheered “Here we go Caleb, here we go *clap*clap*”, so rest assured I am doing everything I can to help you learn to walk, with the exception of moving your legs for you. I plead with you to continue, just a few more steps. I want you to push the walker as far as you can go and then maybe two more steps after that. We’ll take breaks but you know they are short-lived cuddles between these not-so-fun tasks.

Today though, today was different. I truly felt bad. I just wanted to stop and tell the therapist to go home because you shouldn’t have to work as hard as you do. It’s just so damn unfair. You should be comfortably running around and independently maneuvering the stairs like your brother is. I whole-heartedly believe that you will reach all those milestones in your own time but for now, unlike most kids, we have to work hard for them. So even though my heart is breaking at the thought of you pushing yourself during therapy, trust me when I tell you that it’ll all be worth it. I see how proud you are when you learn something new and I think you’re well aware that there aren’t any obstacles that you can’t overcome!   When the thought of you protesting therapy enters my mind and I start to feel sorry for our situation, I try to imagine the day that you walk into my outstretched arms by yourself (how will I ever let you go?) and know that we’re in this together and we’re capable of doing hard things, you and I.

You are the sweetest and kindest little boy with a smile that lights up any room. You’re like a tiny King Midas, but rather than turning items to gold, you have the ability to make every person you encounter fall absolutely in love with you, because yes, you are so incredibly special and lovable. I love being your mommy more than anything so believe me when I say there are awesome things in store for you, little man! Thank you for your continuous hard work and determination, Caleb. You’ve taught me more about myself in 18-months than I learned in my previous 27 years and for that I thank you. To say you’re an inspiration in my life would be such an understatement.

You’ve already accomplished so much and make us so proud everyday. We love you so much and have such big dreams for you. Please remember that when it feels like we’re continuously moving your toys six inches out of reach and making you work so hard.


Your mommy.

photo (30)


I'm a working mom of three fantastic boys: Caleb, Wyatt and Parker. My husband, Shane, and I live in the Washington DC suburbs where we enjoy playgrounds, pools and never getting to sleep in. This blog is a journal of our day-to-day lives as well as a chronicle of Caleb's progress after a recent spinal surgery to alleviate the effects of his cerebral palsy.

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10 comments on “Dear Caleb
  1. omg, how did you write this without balling your eyes out?? you all seem to be doing so well! you are special too momma! it takes an enormous heart to cheer when a lot of people outside of your situation only see the tough parts of your situation. i want to meet this ray of sunshine, just reading about him warms my heart, love the little fighters! thanks for sharing these ali! ❤

    • Louise Beaulieu says:

      Oh my goodness….I just love this post….brings back so many memories…”come on Elizabeth, YOU can do it”!!! How many times did I say that? Guess what? She is now doing IT!!!! Do not give up….Never give up….put those toys 6 inches away….I could tell you some stories…you are fantastic parents, and your little boy will be fine…peace…

    • Oh yeah, the tears were definitely flowing but I felt much better after getting these feelings off my chest. Hope all is well with you!

  2. Darlene says:

    This letter is beautiful! It reminds me so much of how I feel. It seems like a mirror image. My Michael is 20months (18 corrected) and I feel how unfair it is that he cannot run around the same as his twin brother. He works so hard everyday and some days are so grueling on the emotions! Thank you for posting. I only wish I didn’t read at work as I’m crying at my desk! Lol!

    • Hi Darlene! Glad to know I’m not alone. Sorry to make you cry at work! I love that my boys are close, but I have to wonder how much closer they would be if they could run around and chase each other, etc. I know they will develop their own special relationship but it’s just different from what I pictured while pregnant. I hope to hear more about your Michael! Have a good weekend!

  3. Babbles from Brooke says:

    Beautiful! Hang in there, his hard work WILL PAY OFF!

  4. Jen says:

    I also have twin boys and I hope they will be close like yours. I am so rooting for Caleb. I just know he is going to be a kind, compassionate man who will make anyone proud to call him friend.

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