At just 2 years old, LongLong’s mother packed up and left. He’d just been diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy, a group of disorders that would affect his ability to walk and move for likely the rest of his life. LongLong was left with his now single father and grandma to take care of him. Their little country farm wasn’t much, but it helped them get by. Any hopes they’d had of their baby boy leading them into a more successful future were dashed by his diagnosis.
As LongLong grew up, life got more and more difficult. He wasn’t able to attend school, because there are no special education departments in China’s public schools (yet!). His opportunities to get out of the house were fewer and fewer as he got bigger. And his social life got smaller and smaller.
Soon his dad had to move to the city to get a new job so he could support their family better. LongLong stayed at the farm with his grandma. She not only took care of him, but she also took care of the farm and the house. And all of this all by herself!
By the time we met LongLong, he was already 14 years old. He had no access to consistent therapy, no therapy equipment at home, and no regular visitors. His family still had very little understanding of LongLong’s diagnosis and their options for his treatment and future.
The Hope Station team has been working with LongLong’s family since the spring of 2020. Here’s what LongLong’s dad had to say about the support they’ve been receiving:
“Therapy has always been a problem for us. We are thankful to Hope Station for sending us a therapy stander. The therapist came to guide us and patiently helped us figure it out. Now LongLong can do therapy at home every day, which is very convenient! We will persist in doing home therapy, and hope that one day LongLong can walk normally!
LongLong also likes the toy car given to him by the HS staff, it is his most precious and favorite toy. Every time we look at the smile on his face, we feel happy too!”
The grandma is the real hero of this story. She never gave up, through all of the hardships and letdowns. She loved LongLong unconditionally and joyfully through it all. She stuck to her conviction that no matter what, LongLong should stay with family.
Thank you to LongLong’s sponsors who made all of this possible. And thank you to all who have donated or supported Hope Station in any way. This is the kind of difference you are making in people’s lives.