[dbmat] Re: Just a little farther down the road

  • From: Oretha <oretha.thomas@xxxxxxx>
  • To: "dbmat@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <dbmat@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 8 Aug 2015 18:52:53 -0500

This is truly awesome!!! Have fun while enjoying your life Preston. I KNOW this
was a hard decision for you and happy you were able to make this step for
Preston! This was so inspiring for me! Thank You for sharing!
Oretha

Sent from my iPhone

On Aug 8, 2015, at 4:30 PM, <jizaguirre@xxxxxxxxxx> <jizaguirre@xxxxxxxxxx>
wrote:

Leslie,

Thank you for sharing your victory! What a wonderful milestone! I know you
are so proud of him!

Many blessings to you and Preston!

Jacqueline Izaguirre

---- fanfam@xxxxxxx wrote:






Hello DBMAT friends and family. This is Leslie, mother of the Famous
Fansler Family. Some of you have known our family, and my son Preston, for
a long time. Preston was born deaf and blind. He is 27 now; yes, Peter Pan
grew up without his mother’s permission. We have been associated with DBMAT
for many years. Each chapter of Preston’s life has brought unique
challenges, deep heart ache and immense joy. Preston has turned out to be
quite a remarkable young man. I always thought I would keep him home, with
me taking care of him, until I finally died! However, because Preston is
who HE is, since graduation from high school, he has shown me that HE wants
a new chapter in his life. HIS life plan does not include sitting at home
stemming, juggling care givers while I work, searching for ways to keep him
active, hours, days, weeks of nothing much to do, while trying to maintain
the skills he worked so hard to master. HE does not want to sit in a
rocking chair while everyone around him is living a life. Once again, I had
to understand HIM and put HIS wants in front of my unbelievable fear of the
unknown and what could happen to him. There are things about Preston’s life
that scare me so badly I can’t function when I think about them. Preston is
severely disabled, but Preston is not scared. HE wants to live, not be
protected from all life has to offer. So in an amazingly horrific, heart
rending, heroic effort, unbelievable to me, these past two years I have
searched for an adult life for Preston. Scary as all get out! I had to make
sure that he would be OK plus live a fulfilling life. And guess what….I
found it!


It is called HandsOn, in San Antonio, Texas. Headed up by a lady I have
know for over 20 years, the very wise and wonderful, Gay Bellamy. It is a
deaf blind specific program. They totally operate on DeafBlind:
environment, time and activity, and those of you who have a family member
understand what that means. Preston has lived there about 6 months now. I
recently visited him at HIS home. I braced myself for how bad it would be,
even though I receive weekly reports, pics and videos, I was sure he was
just not functioning at all. How could he be, if I wasn’t there every day?
I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that he would be frustrated, have lost
many skills, unable to communicate with anyone, have beard stubble on his
face, losing weight, unable to walk around in the house, have no recreation
or daily purpose, stemming all the time and ready to come back to his mom
and family home. Well, that just wasn’t reality. Preston is AMAZINGLY
happy. He has gained skills and weight. He showed me his room, and was
proud of it. He knew all the routes in his house. He was busy, busy, busy
and not stemming. Dare I say it….. he ACTUALLY communicates with people.
But the best part, Preston has a friend, not a paid care giver, but a deaf
blind peer. Preston has a friend. Who would ever have believed the
impossible dream could come true?


As I headed home from San Antonio I felt like I could breath again. Preston
is living HIS life plan. Hopefully this posting will give those of you,
with an adult family member, the wisdom to see that life for our guys
doesn’t end at graduation, it begins. I hope this gives you the courage to
get past your fear of being the only one able to care for your adult family
member and the unknown. And I hope it motivates you to look at HandsOn’s
website at http://www.handsonsa.org Contact them and see their program.
Mostly, I pray, that we all understand life is worth living. Preston is
LIVING. Go my sweet son, we gave you roots to grow, and now, it is such a
precious gift to watch you bloom.

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