My cousin Dennis sent this following the post about his older brother Alan who was paralyzed with Cerebral Palsy. See the earlier two posts on Views from the Edge for background information.
“For all the limitations Alan suffered, he was so loved by all of us and in his own way could express his love with ‘ah’s and laughter and joy that came through his facial expressions, vocal inflections and expressive eyes. He had his own means of communication which Gwen and I grew to understand. He could express all the human emotions. Alan could speak in his own special way. He called our Dad ‘fata’.
“I learned so much about life and what real love is from growing up with him. We never felt him a burden in any way. We all helped feed him, bathe him and change his diapers. It was a family project that we all did willingly.
“When he was put in an institution we missed his laughter and grieved for him deeply as a family. I don’t think any member of my family was loved and admired more than Alan.
“My father, mother and sister would be so proud of this blog. Their hearts would soar knowing Alan is part of the real world again and a living example of God’s love for us all. Alan did not live in vain. He was a courageous person who had to battle through his palsy to be just another human being like you and me.
“No father cared more for a son than my Dad. He was entirely devoted to him. And Alan looked up to him with adoration in his eyes. Alan could utter several words much like a one year old. He used his throat and lips to utter a very gutteral sound that few could understand but the immediate family. His ‘ah’s were his method of communicating his emotions and it varied depending on the circumstance. He understood everything you said to him and he would respond in his own way to let you know that he understood what you were saying. His eyes and facial expressions spoke a thousand words.”