In 1994 I was diagnosed with celiac disease, which led me to create Celiac.com in 1995. I created this site for a single purpose: To help as many people as possible with celiac disease get diagnosed so they can begin to live happy, healthy gluten-free lives. Celiac.com was the first site on the Internet dedicated solely to celiac disease. In 1998 I founded The Gluten-Free Mall, Your Special Diet Superstore!, and I am the co-author of the book Cereal Killers, and founder and publisher of Journal of Gluten Sensitivity.
A little boy with a severe seizure disorder had his wish to have a special bike of his own granted through national children’s charity Kids Wish Network.
Champaign, IL, August 14, 2010 --(PR.com)-- As a child, Joshua was diagnosed with having Intractable Epilepsy, a disorder in which he experiences seizures that are completely uncontrollable; he currently endures around four major seizures a day. Over the years, Joshua’s doctors have tried well over 10 different seizure medications to try and regulate his condition, but none have worked, including the 3 he is currently taking.
Because of the severity of his condition, Joshua also suffers from developmental delays that have impaired his motor skills to the point where he cannot do much of anything without assistance; his communication skills are very limited. In addition, Joshua was diagnosed with having Celiac Disease, which is a condition that negatively affects his digestive tract when he eats foods that contain gluten. Because of this, Joshua must follow a strict diet that excludes the many foods that have gluten in them, including all wheat-based foods.
It was a teacher of Joshua’s who told his mother Janet about national children’s charity Kids Wish Network and the wishes they grant to kids like Joshua who are suffering from life-threatening illnesses; Joshua’s mother decided to give them a call.
Of all the things he could want, all Joshua wanted was a special bike so that he could ride beside his grandfather during the bike rides he enjoys so much; he previously had to ride behind his grandfather in a special seat.
With an amazing amount of local support from the Westminster Presbyterian Church and the Champaign Firefighters Local 1260, Joshua’s Kids Wish Network wish coordinator arranged for a special side by side “trike” to be sent directly to his house.
Janet says that her son Joshua took to the brand new side by side bike immediately.
“It’s very amazing for him because it usually takes him a while to get used to new things, but since he’s gotten the bike, he’s actually requested going for a ride… he goes out to the garage and stands by it. It’s amazing for him,” said Janet.
“He really likes being right up there next to his grandpa and seeing everything…he’ll even lean over and pat him [his grandpa] on his arm or kiss him…Joshua’s smiling a lot and he’s even laughed a few times, too! This is not usual. I mean, before (on rides) he’d sometimes smile, but not like this.”
Not only is the “wish bike” something to bring a smile to Joshua’s face, but it is also a chance for Joshua to learn things he might not have ever have had the chance to learn.
According to Janet, “It’s going to grow with him. It’s a possibility for him to learn to pedal… he’s even put his hand on the handlebars several times, imitating his grandpa. He’s interested and it’s wonderful.”
Kids Wish Network would like to thank the following for helping to make Joshua’s wish extra special: Westminster Presbyterian Church, Champaign Firefighters Local 1260 and the Worksman Trading Corporation.
Kids Wish Network is a nationally recognized non-profit organization dedicated to infusing hope, creating happy memories, and improving the quality of life for children in crisis. Every child deserves a chance at happiness; a wish is just a way of bringing them that joy. If you would like to sponsor a child’s wish or if you know a child who is suffering from a life-threatening illness and may be in need of Kids Wish Network’s wish granting services, please call 727-937-3600 or toll free 888-918-9004. For more information on Kids Wish Network, visit their website at www.kidswishnetwork.org