Creating a New Vision, Implementing the Plan, and Redefining Potential
by Bob Doman
I have introduced you to Coco previously here and here. Coco is now almost five and a half. For those of you who are new to Coco, he was born with a brain injury/cerebral palsy, with a very broad range of issues and a terrible prognosis. Previously I talked about the development of Coco’s processing abilities, which as you will see in the accompanying video, have not only continued to develop, but are now truly exceptional. Coco’s story is much more than a story of superior processing. Coco’s story is one of parents creating a vision of what they felt could be, then working with incredible focus, intensity, and intention to achieve it.
Coco’s father, Razvan, understanding how important these first years are to his son’s future, has put his career aside and moved his family to a new country, with a new language, which offered greater acceptance and future opportunities for his son and focused on the vision. None of this has been easy for the family. They have had to lower their lifestyle, and mom had to go back to school and start a new career and work on weekdays, while dad works on weekends. A year and a half ago, their second child arrived. Baby Ellen (named after my sister, their NACD coach), not to be neglected, has been on a program of her own and is doing great.
The Manole family “gets it.” They have a vision. Recently the doctors, therapists, and social workers who oversee special needs children in the area requested a meeting with the Manoles, who had declined any of their services. Based on communications with the family, the physician, out of concern for Coco, requested the meeting. Having the child’s medical records, the doctor was concerned because Coco was not receiving any of their services, and he felt that the expectations expressed by the Manoles for Coco were unrealistic. One of the sore points was the Manole’s vision that Coco would someday walk. The doctor found such an expectation as unrealistic under the “best” of circumstances, but certainly delusional if Coco was not even receiving the therapies, services, and assistance they were offering.
So the Manoles met with the official team and introduced them to Coco and his program. The net result of the meeting was that the team got the vision and now share the vision that unconventional parents, doing an unconventional program, not only could, but would if they continued do as they were, turn a vision into a reality.
The Manoles communicate with us very regularly (at times daily) and supply us with very regular program implementation videos. This level of communication and interaction has permitted us to continually modify program and program implementation in order to keep us targeted and thus to take the best advantage of neuroplasticity.
Coco’s dad, Razvan, is a man after my own heart—impatient. He’s not going to wait and see what the future will bring for his son. He’s going to create it.
Please watch Coco’s new video below. You will want to see what digit spans of 22 look like!
Reprinted by permission of The NACD Foundation, Volume 33 No. 1, 2020 ©NACD
Here is Coco’s reaction to seeing the article about him!