Just picture your doctor saying, “Your daughter might not enjoy a lot in her life, so if you find something that she loves – give it to her!”
Being a parent of children with a disability, I know this would have been a sobering and life-altering concept for Jordan’s father Les and mother Kelly to grasp when this sentence was uttered about their daughter, Jordan.
Jordan, three, has Rett Syndrome. It’s a rare neurological disorder, seen almost exclusively in females. They start out like any normal baby to about eighteen months then, sadly, they regress.
Wanting to find something Jordan would love, coupled with a comment from a physiotherapist, who suggested that ‘horse riding would benefit Jordan more than any other therapy’, Kelly contacted Pegasus.
Describing the symptoms, Kelly says “When it begins to kick in, they start to lose their communication, or if they were able to crawl to a toy they lose that ability, or being able to sit independently – they lose that too.”
“I noticed something wasn’t quite right for her. Even at eight months old she wasn’t crawling around the house real fast – it was like one, two and then she would drop to her belly. The strength wasn’t there.”
“Jordan started being able to pick up spoons and objects. For a little while she would have that ability, and then all of a sudden, she would lose it completely. Then the regression will stop and it will plateau again, and then regress again and she will completely forget how to drink out of a cup,” recalls Kelly.
Imagine how devastating that must be as a parent?
Kelly explains the syndrome: “It is like she’s in a bubble. She can see everything, hear everything. She might want something or can see something but she can’t tell me that she wants it, if she’s had enough, or if she wants more!”
Aware of Pegasus’ waiting list to get into a program, Kelly says, “When Jordan was accepted, I bawled my eyes out because I knew this was going to be something beautiful and worthwhile for Jordan to have in her life.”
Pegasus wants to expand and broaden our programs and do more for more people with a disability. To achieve this, I need your help. Your donation can help us acquire and train more horses, increasing the herd from 16 to 25. Every new horse reduces the waiting list and gives seven people the opportunity to benefit from Pegasus horse facilitated therapy programs.
Only just having started at Pegasus this year, Kelly has already noticed the benefits, “I’ve noticed a huge strength in Jordan’s upper core muscles. Now she can actually, for a certain time, put her hands at the front and she will hold her back straight.
“You can see it – it’s actually happening in front of me and it’s a real ‘wow’ moment – like a miracle. The idea of giving Jordan strength in her muscles so she can walk – that’s what we are aiming for.”
As the CEO of Pegasus, I never get tired of hearing these stories of success from parents and participants. At Pegasus, we have a secret ingredient – the horse – is the catalyst for these benefits being realised. It’s the difference between therapy that’s undertaken in a clinical setting, and our horse-facilitated therapy. You think about Jordan – unable to speak, rolling on the floor to get around…
Now imagine her on a horse!
As mum puts it, “On the horse, Jordan is ‘walking’ and that’s something she can’t do; she’s moving and she’s feeling that experience of actually moving.
“Jordan gets to experience a different view from a whole new angle. Watching her on the horse, seeing a different world open up to her – that just brings tears to my eyes knowing that my daughter has the opportunity to feel like a queen on a horse, because what little girl doesn’t love horses?”
Pegasus empowers people to develop abilities.
“The motivation is there – and while she can’t tell me – her smile says it all,” says Kelly.
Please! Help Pegasus find more special horses so Jordan, and those like her, can feel like a queen. It takes promotion, road trips, floating, horse trialling and training – not the mention the cost of the horse itself.
Give generously this tax time!