On October 29th 2009 our lives were forever changed, Carter James Alexander Kowalski Stiltner was born weighing 6 pounds even and 19 inches long. He stole our hearts forever. His struggle in life started early when the doctors decided it was safer on the outside than it was for him inside and they delivered him several weeks early. A rush to the operating room, an emergency C-section for fetal distress, a full resuscitation and a stay in the neonatal intensive care was the whirlwind that we remember when we think of the day our little man made his debut. After Carter had stabilized and was discharged from the NICU we felt we were the luckiest family in the world that he was safe and healthy.
Carter developed as most typical children and hit all of his milestones until the age of 11 months. At that time Carter stopped talking completely. He had been saying things like “all done, bye bye, I love you, mom mom and sissy” and we all assumed that teething, getting 4 molars at the same time was the reason. At 14 months old “Gee-o” (grandma to Carter) joined us in a trip to the doctor and the only thing I remember was her looking at me with concern while the doctor called his name over and over with no response from him at all. At 17 months old Carter was diagnosed with Autism (Regressive type). I recall the first time we dropped Carter off at 18 months old to the Cleveland Clinic Center for Autism as the youngest student they had encountered to date and watched my baby walk in with his tiny little backpack on, I cried for hours. Since that time Carter has grown and we have watched him progress on the spectrum and have witnessed the effect that Autism has had on our lives.
Carter is almost 5 years old now and is full of smiles; loves playing and being active; he loves being close to his family; and loves animals. Carter still struggles and has been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder along with the Autism and has a sleep disorder; he is non-verbal and is impulsive. Carter bolts in traffic, wanders, runs toward water and does not comprehend being safe before he acts. Safety, therapeutic bonding, emotional and physical support are all things that obtaining a service dog would help Carter with. Please help us help Carter.
You can also mail a check to:
W.A.G.S. 4 Kids
112 E. Center Street
Berea, OH 44017
Please make a memo note that your donation is for Carter.