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Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado

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John-John: His Story (Special Needs Parenting 101)
By Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado
Monday, February 18, 2008

Rated "G" by the Author.

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A story about a very special little boy, as recounted by his mother.

To look at my son, one would think he couldn't do anything for himself.  They see him, and wonder.

Our son, Johnathon Francis (John-John to us) was born without eyes and with limited use of his muscles.  Because of this, he's in a wheelchair.  This has never stopped him.

At the age of seven, John-John has the sweetest disposition:  he's always smiling or laughing.  He loves to sing, play the piano (he's been playing piano since he was two), listen to country music (Ronnie Milsap is his favorite), go to concerts, play with his computer, and roll around on the floor with his baby sister when he's not in his wheelchair.

When he grows up, John-John would either like to become a singer/musician or a doctor. (Or a preacher.)  He is incredibly smart; in fact, he's in the gifted/talented program at his school.

We are extremely proud of him and all that he's accomplished, in spite of his disabilities.

When people first see John-John in public, they are either moved or incensed; we have heard it all, regarding comments:

"Oh, you poor thing!"

"You must be so brave to parent a child like that!" 

"Wouldn't he be better off in an institution?"  

"How can he possibly be happy?"  

"What a marvelous thing you are doing!"

"God bless you!"

"What a miracle he is!"

"How can he do anything? He's in a wheelchair and doesn't have eyes!  What kind of life is that?"

We try to keep our comments to ourselves; we just smile at the people and go on.  We really love it when John-John's with us:  his ears work just fine, and so does his mouth:  he responds with, "Oh, I can do many things, so don't worry about me!"

That usually shuts them up.

John-John never has a mean thing to say about anybody. He loves life, loves all people, only sees the good, never the bad.  I don't know how he does it, but he manages to bring out the best in people. He's our little star-in-the-making, our Angel-Boy, our world.

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Reviewed by Carole Mathys 2/18/2008
This young man is indeed an inspiration...good job!
love, Carole~
Reviewed by Rose Rideout 2/18/2008
He is pure love and don't mind sharing it with others. A great write Karen thank you for sharing that of an innocent child who through it all sees only the good in the world he lives in.

Newfie Hugs are on the way, Rose
Reviewed by E T Waldron 2/18/2008
A beautiful write Karen, showing how Creator lives within to inspire those who seem to have nothing. His sweet disposition is Christ within,and how fortunate are those who see it!Well done !
Reviewed by Felix Perry 2/18/2008
Very well done Karen with sensitivity and caring.

Reviewed by Charlie 2/18/2008
maybe his eyes were sewed shut so he could have what nessa blaine calls allegorical vision... what a miracle, indeed. --Charlie
Reviewed by Mr. Ed 2/18/2008
We are extremely proud of him and all that he's accomplished, in spite of his disabilities.

As everyone, should be.
Reviewed by Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner 2/18/2008
In answer to Georg's question, YES. People have no common sense - as for this write, I would wonder how someone without eyes, in a wheelchair, could function. Sounds like John-John's doing just fine, thank you very much, as he says, "No need to worry about me." Excellent, Karen.

Attitudes from those who don't pity themselves will inspire the rest of us with disabilities, and those who have disabilities of the mouth. :)

(((HUGS))) and love, Karla.
Reviewed by Georg Mateos 2/18/2008
In an enlighted 2008 year, are still around people that dense?
God gives a child for you to love and care, not to show pity, that other people thinks that dumping a child in a cold blooded institution is the best for that child is beyond me...

Reviewed by Dawn Anderson 2/18/2008
Karen, I think we can all take a lesson from John-John, by loving life and seeing the good in others.

Books by
Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado

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Father knows best Phil In His Words. by Tuchy (Carl) Palmieri

“Phil In His Words” Is an interactive workbook to record the timeless words of one’s Father. Who can dispute the words of wisdom giving by a loving father? Phil Palmieri was Bor..  
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