She has always been our Krissy…..
Our beautiful daughter Kristina was born in September 1985. As first-time parents, we were simply overjoyed. Then the unthinkable happened. At 7 days old, Krissy became ill with a rare form of meningitis. In a heartbeat our lives changed.
At our local hospital our beautiful baby had stopped breathing; she was placed on a ventilator and transferred to a hospital better equipped to handle her medical needs. She was hospitalized for months.
We met with so many specialists and none were hopeful. Most did not think our daughter would survive. Krissy had suffered extensive brain damage; one doctor even told us “the brains of our daughter were rotting”. It was incomprehensible. Doctors were not optimistic. But we never gave up hope…
We fought for Krissy, even as she needed many difficult surgeries. Finally, she was well enough to come home. And when she stabilized, we began to look for early intervention services to support her – because Krissy was defying her doctors, and getting stronger. And we believed in her. This is when we found UCP. Krissy was three months old. We have been with UCP every day since….. Our determined search for outstanding pediatric programs led us to UCP. We were paired with an intake coordinator and a therapist who provided in-home services three times a week. The UCP staff were amazing. Working regularly with Krissy, they helped us to set achievable goals: sit, crawl, stand.
That holiday season, Krissy sat for her first holiday portrait. Her progress continued and Krissy soon began attending the Children’s Center. As Krissy continued to receive the support she needed, she was soon standing in the Children’s Center’s gym and walking the hallways.
In her teens, Krissy began horseback riding lessons to assist with her mobility. She quickly became a blue ribbon rider. In 98’, during a lesson, Krissy was thrown when her horse got “spooked” and never fully regained her mobility. Despite this setback, Krissy continued to progress. In 2007 she graduated from The Children’s Center. She transitioned to UCP’s Adult Day Program where she has happily attended for the past 14 years.
Today Krissy is 36. She has friends; loves 50’s & 60’s music, plays percussion instruments, and is a member of UCP’s performing group, The Sensations. All these years later, UCP remains an integral part of our lives. In fact, during the past year, UCP was more valuable than ever. Krissy remained connected to her friends and to the things she loves to do thanks to UCP’s remote programs.
Krissy is living a full LIFE WITHOUT LIMITS; one doctors never believed possible. “But we believed and we fought for her”. And UCP-LI has been by our side, providing the support our Krissy has needed throughout her life. We are so grateful.
Together we can ensure that all individuals with disabilities receive the support they need to live their fullest life. Please consider making a donation today…
With deepest gratitude,
UCP Parent and Advocate