Loyale Matthias Massey is twelve years old. Loyale has Spina Bifida and all the complications that accompany the diagnosis. One of those challenges is being in a wheelchair full-time. Loyale has been involved with Rainbows since he was born. Loyale participated in Rainbows’ Infant/Toddler Services and has also received water therapy. Currently, Loyale is receiving Targeted Case Management through Rainbows.
Loyale’s mother, Beth, chose to share his story and their family’s experience in her own words:
We have seen much progress since the early days of Loyale’s Rainbows therapy. He has gone from being an infant that we worried about and wondered how much he would accomplish, to a twelve-year-old that enjoys life and is working to be more independent.
I want people to know Loyale is funny and kind, and he loves his family. Loyale is the youngest of eight children and has three nieces. Our immediate family adds up to sixteen people! He also loves anything to do with police officers and fire fighters; they are his heroes. Loyale enjoys hanging out with friends and riding around our town with his sister on his firefly scooter. He helps out with the children’s ministry at our church, participates in Triple Threat Theater Company, and competes in the “Challenge Games” each May. He has grown so much through those experiences.
We have loved being part of the Rainbows family. The first three years were great, receiving the support and reassurance that you were doing all you could to help your child grow and develop. We have even received supplies such as diapers, pull-ups and wipes over the years from Rainbows. Once, we were blessed with so many boxes of diapers that it filled the whole landing of our home’s entryway. They lasted for months! We were so grateful that we didn’t have to worry about that detail of his care.
Presently, we have a Targeted Case Manager, Chelsea Bush, with Rainbows. Most recently, Chelsea has assisted us in raising funds for a chair lift for our new home. We recently purchased a home that is one level, with a basement. We have been renovating it for several months. Our previous home of twenty-two years was a tri-level and made it very difficult to get Loyale to the upper, main, or lower levels of our home. Since moving, we have installed ramps to our front and back door, and Loyale is now able to enter our home almost entirely unassisted. THIS IS A BIG DEAL! Proceeds from this year’s Blarney Breakfast will help fund a chair lift for our house. This will make our basement accessible to him. In our former home, he rarely went to the basement, even though it was the level where his siblings spent most time of their time, isolating him from much of the interaction with them. We are excited to have a home that he can thrive in and will allow him to gain more and more independence!
Rainbows has always been there to help us as much as they could with the resources they had available. I have appreciated them always contacting me, and asking how they could be of assistance to our family. I loved their proactive stance, reminding me that they are a resource that I could get help from whenever we need it.