Reader Interactions


  1. thanks for sharing, katie! we appreciate the chance to share in your learning and journey… it’s a help to demystify CP for all of us. and love love your girl!

    • Thank you a whole lot and telling me what my child needs for his tight ankle cords. I truly appreciate you for sharing that with me. He has an appointment on Monday. I’m overwhelmed because I’m the one who has to watch him when he first wakes up. Thats when its worse for him. Thank you again!!!

  2. I just watched a teenager with CP and many issues help on a missions trip. He was a part of a drama team that went into schools.
    I’m positive that his contribution to those skits was more meaningful than anyone else’s.

  3. I appreciate this article. We know a little girl who “technically” has CP, but her doctor and parents have chosen not to widely share that diagnosis because there is such a misconception about what CP is and is not. In some ways it’s easier for her parents to talk about “delays” and “gross motor impairment” and let friends, family, and strangers learn what that looks like for themselves.

    Thank you for helping to demystify!

  4. Before being a fulltime mama I used to be an Occupational Therapy Assistant. I briefly worked with children with CP and they were such a joy to work with! Truly, some of the sweetest kids I have ever met! My husband and I also have a friend who has CP and you would never know to look at him, he walks and talks and fits everyones idea of ‘normal’. He does still have difficulties because of his CP, but a lot of the pain, high/low muscle tone and digestive problems just go on behind the scenes. He is a remarkable guy and a great friend.

  5. Thank you! I just read your post and spent a while praying for my son who also has CP. He is now 32 and was born at 28 weeks during a time when those children did not live. Not only did he live he is perfect :). Like your daughter he used leg braces and used help in walking. He did not sit until he was 14 months, rolled over at 15 months and walked at 28 months…a bit slower then most kids…right on time for him:) Over time he only needed the walker and today he has shoe inserts. He had a few surgery’s over the years to help with his legs and more so to help with feedings as he had a feeding tube for a few years. Today he eats anything he wants! I cannot say it was easy but I can say it was a blessing to raise him.

    Like you we told everyone he had CP and over time he would tell them that he has CP. Since he grew up with it to him it was the same as being left handed or having red hair…just a fact of life. I recall when he was 7 and wanted so bad to play soccer that he told us “I can stand and fall at that net better then anyone….I have done that dive a 100 times!!” In his mind he had fallen so many times that diving to catch that ball would be easy :) . He played that year and did well, mostly he taught every coach and parent what a heart of love looks like :)

    Thirty years later I can tell you I would not be the same person without having watched him grow. He found a way to do most anything he wanted to do and taught me lesson I could never have learned without him. Most of all he showed me how amazing our Lord is and how blessed I was for God to trust me with him!

    Give your daughter a big hug from this mom and grandma who knows well the joys of the good days and not so good and most of all knows the love you share.

    God Bless you, your family and all those amazing little children who are teaching us to be better parents and grand parents.

    • Thank you for sharing your very personal and touching, feelings and experiences. It has me totally teared up. My son is 4 and I can just see the soccer experience, loved it!

  6. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge and experience and taking some of the mystery and awkwardness out of relating to people with CP. Best wishes.

  7. My nephew Chris was born with Cerebral Palsy Spastic Diplegia, which meant his legs were very stiff. He could walk, but only for 10-15 minutes. He was in constant pain and had to wear splints. 18 months ago he underwent a Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR) at St Louis Children’s Hospital. After intense physiotherapy the results are nothing short of a miracle. Last year he was able to throw away his splints and sold his wheelchair. He is able to run and play and do Karate. You can find out more about SDR and see some before and after videos at his website

  8. Thank you for writing and distributing this information. I knew next-to-nothing about CP, and since I know no one who has it, I probably would not have taken the time to research it on my own. You helped me become more knowledgeable about it and saved me time in the future should I ever come across anyone with CP or get the itch to learn more. Thank you. -CM

  9. Thanks for this post, Katie, and for the pictures and stories of these beautiful kids. I have no experience with CP, but 20 years ago I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis; I’m a walking miracle now, but my onset was severe, and at that time it helped tremendously to know that 1 in 100 women have the same disease.

    I think with any disability, it’s good to know that there are others in the same situation who are living normal lives, even when the word “normal” needs to be re-defined. Thanks for raising our awareness.

  10. Thank you for this article. My nephew has CP. He is a twin, and he and his brother were born about 10 weeks early. His brother does not have CP. My nephew with CP just graduated summa cum laude from a very good university where he was very well liked, and which is 5 hours from his home. He has had numerous operations and has faced every challenge head-on. He is a valuable member of his family, and of society. We are blessed to know him.

  11. Thanks for sharing, we need more posts like this for everyone out there. I knew hardly anything about CP before reading.

  12. Fantastic post, Katie! I first came into contact with someone with CP when I was a university and got a part-time job assisting an 8 year old girl with moderate-severe symptoms. She was in a wheel chair and required help to do most things– go to the bathroom, get dressed, get in and out of her chair, eat (depending on what it was). We also did physical therapy with her each morning and night, in addition to special sessions with an actual therapist, to help keep her tight leg and arm muscles being moved and stretched as much as possible. She was one of the sweetest and most positive little girls, despite the fact that her identical twin was was born without CP and was able to do all the things that she couldn’t do. I can’t imagine how hard that must have been, but you wouldn’t know it from her demeanor or can-do attitude.

    Later that year, I had the privilege of being on the university student council with a fellow student named Jeff. He walked with a bit of a limp, and his right arm had very limited movement, so he did most things with his left arm and just used his right arm to help him carry things or to support his other arm. Overall, though, he was just a regular student and a friendly guy. He fought hard to keep up with his studies, while balancing a busy role in student council, and was one of the most determined, positive guys I’ve ever worked with. You’re so right about those with CP being fighters. I agree 100%.

    Your little girl is gorgeous, btw, and she’s getting so big so fast! Thanks so much for sharing this on behalf of her and all those who live with CP! :)

  13. Thank you, I had been wondering what CP was since it didn’t seem to be the same from child to child!

  14. I have a good friend who adopted a little boy with cp when he was 5. He was in a home because his parents couldn’t care for him. He is 19 now but very handicapped everywhere but in his brain. He is so bright and says he is the same as everyone else he just cant walk.

  15. Right on! My Mom has CP and although it slowed her down, it certainly didn’t stop her. She has a Master’s Degree, has been married to Dad for 45 years, and is just plain awesome.

    Thanks for bringing this to light!

  16. Thanks so much for sharing! We are walking down the foster/adopt road right now, and I’ve always been more comfortable with children with emotional/psychological disabilities than physical disabilities. Thanks for painlessly helping me rethink that idea.

  17. Thanks for posting this! My son who was adopted at 20 months also has CP. I love that you made the point that CP looks different for each kid. The comment we get most often is, “he looks normal.” I know people mean well, but it grates on me. Mostly what they see is a toddler whose CP manifestation looks very toddler-ish and his small size contributes to that. It won’t be until he gets a little older and is still taking awhile to learn gross and fine motor skills and to speak that he will stand out more or look “different”. I also think comments like that betray and unerlying bias against people with special needs. Thankfully we’re not going for “normal” in this family, but healthy, happy, and loving – whatever that looks like for us.

  18. We were blessed to adopt our beautiful daughter at birth, and shortly before her second birthday received her diagnosis of CP (spastic diplegia.) Walking this journey with her has made our life so much richer and she has taught us so much. At eleven years old, she is a talented, smart, strong and loving, lovely young lady!

    I shared our family’s experience with CP on our blog in 2008:

  19. I want to thank you for writing this, Katie. My little boy, who’s 4, has CP. I will definitely share this so that others can read it! So often we have to rely on medical terms and such for understanding, that it’s nice when someone who is in the same situation can put it into “layman’s terms”.

  20. Thank you! My niece (30 months) was just diagnosed with CP last Christmas and we’re still learning so much. It’s great for my husband and I to hear these encouraging stories so we can be an encouragement to her parents when they need it.

  21. Thank you so much for sharing this. My daughter has mild CP as part of her global diagnosis. We try not to talk about the label “CP” too much and simply tell people that she has gross and fine motor skill delay caused by brain damage. We found that when we said “cerebral palsy” people would treat us differently or ask why she wasn’t in a wheelchair. I really appreciate this information being shared on a widely read blog. And it’s so nice to see in many of the comments people stating that they learned more about CP and feel more comfortable with it after reading your article.

  22. Katie, this is a thorough explanation of CP written in simple language. My treatment of CP and disabilities is also simple, short and thorough. In six weeks with therapeutic massage can acquire most body function delays as seen in this video.
    Video of MP a 3-year-old boy with atonic cerebral palsy, aphasia, development and intellectual disability. (before treatment and after every week or 5 treatments during 6 weeks)

    I am a medical doctor from Bolivia dedicated to the treatment of persons with disabilities. I recently got my therapeutic massage license in Oregon, Marcelo Zurita LMT #17191. My email:

  23. Yay! Thank you for sharing about CP. I have 6 year old twin boys who were born at 27 wks and both have CP. There’s is very mild with no cognitive delay. They just breezed through kindergarten, praise God.

    For one son it is a fine motor delay and for the other more of a coordination issue. We do OT and PT occasionally but in spurts (due to insurance) and then I continue the therapy exercises at home. They did serial casting for 6 weeks at 4 years old and then braces. One continues with braces while one is done for now.

    The term CP scared us at first. Hearing that your 3 1/2 yr olds BOTH have Cerebral Palsy sounds life altering and for some it is. I don’t want to make light of that. The levels of severity are extreme. For us, however it helped explain why they were having some of the issues and became an answer to our questions. Few people in our lives know their diagnosis not because WE are afraid of this term that is a small piece of our sweet boys lives but because of what people’s perceptions of kids with CP are. We don’t want them to be limited in anyone’s mind at this point. I look forward to the day when they feel comfortable telling their story. I believe that it is theirs to tell and it will be a beautiful one that proves those with “disabilities” should NEVER be given limitations by others.

  24. I loved this article and all of the comments, as well. I am a momma to 3 precious blessings. My middle child, Avery, is 7 years old and she has CP. She had a stroke during birth. She has spastic diplegia on her left side. She has epilepsy, fine motor delays, gross motor delays, visual perception difficulties, sensory processing difficulties and learning difficulties as a result of her CP. She wears a brace on her left foot/leg to help keep her heel down and stretch through the back of her leg. She has received botox injections in her spastic muscles and that has helped along with electric stimulation. She receives weekly physical therapy and occupational therapy. She is an amazing and beautiful little girl. We have learned so much through her diagnosis and her journey. She is tenacious and brave and creative and witty. She totally lives life to the fullest! It feels good to share her story and to read about others, as well! Thanks for this post.

    • My sister Karen was born with CP, due to complications during delivery, and her issues were/are very similar to what you describe above. I grew up around her friends, who often had special needs as well, but was taken back when a good friend said she had cerebral palsy—this friend has the slightest of limps and no other noticeable issues. She opened my eyes to just how diverse the CP label is.

      I often wish my mother had the gift of an online community when she was a young mother struggling without a lot of information and very few family or friends who understood CP. Thank you, Katie, for this post and Simple Mom for sharing it.

  25. I have 4 years old triplets, two boys and a girl. They were born 6 weeks pre-mature. When they turned 1 year we learned that my daughter has CP, (we never done an MRI, since I was hesitant to put her under anesthesia very mild version) but its impacts for fine motor skills, along with walking and jumping. She has very weak muscle tone. It’s a life change and constant work. She has gone through both PT and OT, curently is in massage therapy which has done miracles. Thank you for the post!

  26. My brother was born with CP, He had severe case and was in a wheel chair his whole life, had no control over his limbs and communicated through laughter. He always had a smile on his face. He left this earth when he was thirteen. I love reading about kids with CP and what they can do. Thank you for this post, I have been a long time subscriber of your blog but hate to say they emails usually just get deleted, until a couple weeks ago, I accidentally opened one up and started reading and it was exactly what I needed to hear that day.. I now don’t delete them but it takes me a few days to get around to reading them.. CP is a concern that is very dear to my heart. My brother has been gone for over 20 years and still miss him wildly.

  27. Love love loved this. My 3 yo also has spastic diplegia CP. She wears leg braces (almost the same as your daughter even except hers have hearts. Her old ones had the butterflies!) also but now walks ok without them. She struggles with speech and motor skills but is sharp and happy and loving and ornery too. :) We don’t know what caused her CP either as there was no trauma or anything. This article helped me with knowing others are out there and that she is exactly who God wanted her to be. Now that she’s older it is more obvious that she is “different” and I’ve struggles with how to handle that, so this post was timely. Thank you and many blessings to your daughter and the other beautiful children.

  28. I was a special education teacher for nearly 10 years and by far the students who had the deepest impact on me forever were those with CP. You explained so perfectly how differently CP presents itself…and yet every single child I’ve come in contact with has always been the sweetest, will teach you more about perseverance than you will ever know and they are so strong (in more ways than one!)

  29. Thank you for this article. I have a 5 year old with CP. He had a brain bleed and traumatic birth. He is non mobile and has no head control. He requires a lot of care but he too brings so much joy to our lives. He is beautiful and his laugh is contagious. Thank you for sharing your story and bringing awareness for others.

  30. Thank you so much for this. Laura is beautiful! As another mom of a child with CP, I know just how much people don’t understand about the condition. Keep spreading the good word!

  31. My 18-year-old daughter is a right-hemiplegic CP and she amazing!
    She was born slightly premature and developed meningitis at 9-days-old. We realized that she had a brain bleed when the doctors did a spinal tap to diagnose the meningitis. Being alerted to the possibility of CP we took her to a baby therapy clinic for the first 3 years of her life and then continued with OT and physio until she was 11 years old.
    She has limited use of her right hand and foot, but has learnt to cope so well. When strangers greet her and she gives them her left hand instead, they sometimes look perplexed and she simply says,”It’s a left-handed thing!”
    We accept that the Lord uses her weakness for His glory, and her struggles have made her a deep and amazing person.

  32. I was born 24 weeks gestation and I have Asperger’s syndrome, but other than that, I have no health problems.
    I consider myself a miracle because even though I was born 24 weeks, I have Asperger’s syndrome, nothing else.
    I am a practicing Christian. When I grow up, I plan to adopt a 23 month old female child with cerebral palsy, Esther Haneen Elias, from Syria, because in Syria, people with cerebral palsy are not treated well. Esther is a biblical name meaning “star” and refers to the beautiful biblical queen who saved the Jewish people in Iran from persecution by an Iranian Islamic extremist, Haman.

  33. Just discovered your site, and really love it! I’m an adult with Cerebral Palsy. I’m learning now like never before, than all the anti-discrimination or accessibility laws in the world can’t really overcome society’s perceptions of disability. My purpose in life is to show everyone I cross paths with the most honest, positive and capable depiction of a disabled person I can, in hope than the next time they have the opportunity to hire someone or park in a blue zone “for just a minute” or block a ramp, etc. That they think of me. Knowing that someone like me influenced you is the best encouragement. Thank you so much!