Today's post comes from Casey Deakins, who happens to have a BIRTHDAY today. Happy Birthday, Casey, and thank you for your encouraging words.
Dear Parents just starting on this crazy journey in the Cranio world,
My name is Casey, I am 27 years old with Apert Syndrome, and at the age of 13 I was also diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, an Autism Spectrum Disorder. I’m writing you this letter in the hopes that it can bring you comfort and advice for the following years of your journey. To start, it does get better. While it may seem like the bumps are never-ending, it does get easier. But if I could offer a crucial piece of advice, it would be to never let your child give up. The “I can’t” and “I will never” can be turned into “I can do this!!!” It may take a little more elbow grease but it CAN be done, dreams CAN be reached. I am 15 months or so away from graduating with my Bachelor of Science degree in Public Administration, and while due to unforeseen circumstances, the journey has taken 10 years to complete, I kept pursuing my dream. I will admit that I still have days where I start breaking down and feeling like I can’t accomplish what I've set out to do, but then my awesome family are there to go “Casey…..what are you doing??? You can so do this!!!!!”
As Nelson Mandela spoke so eloquently, “I learned that Courage was not the absence of fear but rather the strength to overcome it. The brave man is he who does not feel afraid, but he who overcomes it.” And as an old college professor once told me “Anything you have to work hard for, is worth it in the end.” Coming from someone who has had many doors slammed in my face for one reason or another in the past 27 years of my life…the rewards are made that much sweeter with each door that closes.