What It Means to Carry Others Through

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by Jackie Babiarz |

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Whether we realize it or not, we carry someone through on a daily basis. A dad makes breakfast for his son to carry him through final exams. Teammates cheer from the sidelines to carry their team through to the end zone. A friend delivers coffee to carry a mom through a long day after a sleepless night with her unwell child.

In our home, 24 hours a day, we mentally, emotionally, and physically carry through our 12-year-old daughter, Cammy.

We carry Cammy’s limp body to her wheelchair, changing table, shower, and bed. We carry her communication device, orthotics, nebulizer, and oxygen machine. We carry her feeding pump, formula, and syringes. We carry her diapers, wipes, and new clothes.

We carry all the decisions of Cammy’s care. We carry her happiness, sadness, pain, joy, defeats, and triumphs. We equally carry the fear of outliving Cammy, and of her outliving us.

We carry the hope for a cure for Rett syndrome.


And every single day, people carry us through.

Our neighbors carry us through whenever we call an ambulance for Cammy. They are immediately on our doorstep to be with Cammy’s little sister, Ryan. Friends carry us through with hugs on really rough days. Community members carry us through when we see “Cammy Can” shirts proudly worn around the neighborhood. Complete strangers carry us through when they hold open the door. Facebook friends carry us through with a simple comment of encouragement.

Cammy and her friend, Noah Ties, at our Valentine’s Day party last February. (Photo by Jacqueline Babiarz)

Our family carries us through. Grandpa carries us each week as he takes Cammy to physical therapy to give me a break. Aunt Kristin carries us each time she is around and refuses to let me transfer Cammy. “One less carry for you,” she says.

Aunt Joanne carries us when she takes Cammy for a walk to complete their Sesame Street 100-mile challenge to give Cammy a goal to achieve. Aunt Kim carries us through a night’s sleep when she stays over to be Cammy’s night nurse and slumber party buddy.

Photo by Jacqueline Babiarz

Grandpa Bill Babiarz greets Cammy before taking her to physical therapy. (Photo by Jacqueline Babiarz)

Photo by Jacqueline Babiarz

Aunt Kristin Spalo carries Cammy on the beach to enjoy the sand and waves with her cousins. (Photo by Jacqueline Babiarz)

Photo by Jacqueline Babiarz

Aunt Joanne Kier and Cammy go for a walk for their Sesame Street 100-mile challenge. (Photo by Jacqueline Babiarz)

Photo by Jacqueline Babiarz

Aunt Kim Cernek and Cammy having a slumber party. (Photo by Jacqueline Babiarz)

My tribe carries me though. My husband carries me through when my body breaks down. He is the calming force when we receive bad news. He is the glue that keeps us all from falling apart.

Ryan carries me through every minute she’s been alive. She brings life, hope, and light into my heart by simply being her beautiful, weird, kind self. Beyond a shadow of a doubt, Cammy carries me through the journey we call life.

Read more about Cammy’s story at our blog, “Cammy Can Reverse Rett.”

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Note: Rett Syndrome News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Rett Syndrome News, or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Rett syndrome.

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