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"Timmy" . . . our beautiful, smiling, innocent 36-year-old baby. Timothy Hilton Strain was born on June 25, 1966, a healthy, happy baby boy. His creativity and imagination was amazing for a child. Always dreaming up stories and play-acting, he was one day a brave fire-fighter, another day the "Grinch who stole Christmas", and yet another day one of the three little kittens, diligently searching for his mittens.

Then one day when he was about five years old, he collapsed to the floor, spilling a cup of milk he had been carefully carrying from the refrigerator. Then it happened again . . . and again.

The doctors told us he had epilepsy. He was having petit mal seizures. Fear raised its ugly head into our hearts and we dreaded hearing the cause . . . was it a tumor . . . was it a virus . . . was it genetic? The cause was never determined except to put a strange sounding name to it: "Coffin-Lowery Syndrome", resulting in seizures of an idiopathic nature.

The seizures increased and intensified. Then, in 1975 at the age of nine, Timmy went into "status epilepticus." He had hundreds of seizures without recovery time. After rushing him to the hospital emergency room, his heart stopped. Thankfully the physicians were able to use defibrilators and bring our baby back to us. But, from that point on, our Timmy was profoundly retarded and physically disabled.

Our Timmy is still having seizures today, is still disabled, unable to talk, and unable to do the simplest things for himself. We, his parents, are responsible for anticipating and meeting his every need and desire.

A sad story? Yes, it is sad to see a child once so bright and promising become a mere shadow of himself. But there is yet another story brought on by our Timmy.

Through Timmy we have learned the love of God, the mercy of Jesus, and the power and strength we can have when we are at our weakest. God is here, with us, fighting this battle for us. We only need to trust in Him.

Through Timmy we have learned unconditional love. We have learned that it does not matter what you can say or how well you can speak. What matters is what is in your heart. We have learned through Timmy that understanding love does not come from understanding words. Love grows from actions. Love grows from caring and meeting needs.

While we are sojourners on this earth, we will never know the whys and wherefores of our Timmy's malady. We will never begin to understand why some children have their futures snatched away from them when things are looking so bright. We will never understand why we were chosen to be the parents of this remarkable child. Someday we will know. For now we trust.

This page is dedicated to our Timmy. Our precious little baby boy who will never grow up. His life is our inspiration. His love is our energy. His presence in our home is our spark and our drive. His being our son is the most blessed thing that could have ever happened to us.

Written with a heart full of love by his Mommy,

Timmy and his best buddy, "Daddy-Doo" (Bob Strain),
checking out the goats at the pumpkin patch, Fall, 2000



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