Ottawa Lions Club Help Jonathan's Dream Come True
Many thanks to the Ottawa Lions Club for helping 11 year old Jonathan Golland's dream of walking come true. Jonathan first arrived in our building in his wheelchair to travel about 100' from the car into the building although he was able to use a Kaye walker. Jonathan was very excited about the idea of trying to learn to walk and throughout the program he showed a great deal of determination and endurance. Even with badly sun burned legs from a weekend at the beach he refused to miss any time from class. This true grit enabled John to walk out of the building using 2 ordinary canes only 5 weeks later.
While he was here his mother took him to the Quinte Mall where he used his canes to walk twice the length of the mall. He was white as a ghost and covered in sweat. His mother knew he had enough and went to get him a courtesy wheelchair but when she returned Jonathan, quite defiantly said, "I am never getting back in that thing"
We can not cure kids with CP, Jonathan's walking is very labored and requires a great deal of effort even after time to practice long distances will still tire him quickly so he may not be able to cast away his chair totally. However he now has a new sense of freedom when he can function around his home by standing and using walls and furniture to navigate around the house instead of crawling or using his Kaye walker. He is now able to go out with his parents and either use two canes or he can hold one hand and use one cane. This saves a great deal of time when parents need to rush to the local store and they can, without always having to haul around his wheelchair and Kaye walker.
During the program when Jonathan was practicing using his canes the Conductor let go of him with out his knowledge and when the Conductor informed him that he was not being held Jonathan (like a child who had just realized that they were pedaling a two wheeler for the first time with no assistance) nervously proclaimed ," You mean I am doing it? I am walking by myself!"
Jonathan is scheduled to give a benefit concert this Fall to help raise money for the Ottawa Lions Club in hope that they could sponsor another family to come and like most of the families that have attended our programs I am sure that Jonathan would like to find a way to return and continue to train very hard because one day, with his determination, who knows what this young man will achieve.