Let me introduce you to my sweet nephew, Nate Davis.
I Can Do Hard Things- Nate Davis
Nate was born 5 1/2 weeks early and weighed 4 lbs. 7 oz. Fortunately he did not have to spend extra time in the hospital, but unfortunately for him, he was forced to wear Cabbage Patch Doll clothes. :)
"Hemiparesis is unilateral paresis, that is, weakness of the entire left or right side of the body (hemi- means "half"). Hemiplegia is, in its most severe form, complete paralysis of half of the body."
In layman's terms, the left side of Nate's brain did not form correctly. Because the left side of his brain does not work correctly, this has presented a lot of problems for Nate in his 26 years of life on this earth. His left eye vision is impaired and the hearing in his left ear is as well. The right side of his body does not function properly so the left side of his body has to compensate for that. Also, because of the loss of function in the left side of his brain, his reading ability and speech are also affected.
None of this has stopped Nate from doing exactly what he has wanted to do in his life. I have never seen someone so determined. One of the things I love about Nate is that he keeps trying until he can do something. I mentioned that he is a great basketball player. His mom, Julie, tells me that he spent hours shooting hoops in their driveway and all of that practice time shows. He has won many medals in the Special Olympics and I know that he will continue to play basketball as long as he is breathing. He loves it.
Julie shared a story with me about when Nate was 7 years old. They had recently moved into their home and the kids were outside playing. Natalie (Nate's older sister) came running in the house and said, "Mom! Come watch Nate!" Julie ran outside where low and behold, Nate was riding a bike. Natalie and her friends had worked with him and taught him how to ride a bike. Julie could not believe it.
And while we are talking about people doing hard things, I cannot close this post without giving a shout out to Nate's mom, Julie. She has endured many hard times in trying to help Nate through his developmental challenges. She is grateful for all of the help that she has received from family members, especially her parents. She also received a lot of strength from priesthood blessings and time spent in prayer. One of the things that helped her the most was when Nate received his patriarchal blessing. In that blessing, Nate was told that he is here to gain a body and to help others draw closer to Christ. What an incredible mission this young man has in this life. He is a very special child of God.