Isabella, kissing Gus “How’s Isabella?” I ask her mom, Linda. I met and talked with Linda and Isabella a few months ago, just after Jacob’s Fund began sponsoring Isabella’s therapeutic riding. I remembered Isabella as a quiet little girl who clearly loved her therapy horse, Gus. “She’s progressing as a normal kid, very outgoing, she speaks her mind and has lots of common sense. She’s healthy and happy,” Linda says of her daughter. I feel like cheering. Isabella is autistic and struggles with a language disorder. Speaks her mind? Outgoing? You go, girl! Linda goes on to give me some examples. At school recently, she cut her head, just a small cut, fixed with a Band-Aid, but it bled. Isabella blotted some of the blood on the paper she was working on. Her teacher was momentarily startled until Isabella spoke in a dramatic voice, “I am signing my paper in blood for you.” She often displays that dry wit in class, the teacher tells Linda.
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Jonah at hippotherapy One of the things I like most about being the regular blogger for Jacob’s Fund is that I get to tell you about the sweet, funny, courageous kids whose hippotherapy and therapeutic riding costs Jacob’s Fund scholarships. One of the things I find hardest is condensing their stories into some paragraphs that convey their glorious selves so that you can get to know them. I know you want to know what their conditions and diagnoses are and how you’re helping them through your support of Jacob’s Fund. But there’s so much more to these children. Take Jonah, for instance. Cassie at McKenna Farms had warned me before my visit with Jonah and his mom: “He’s a cutie!” And, oh my gosh! Is he ever! Jonah was born with multiple heart defects, like Jacob. At least one of those defects is the same as one of Jacob’s, hypoplastic left heart syndrome , a relatively rare birth defect in which the left ventricle of the baby’s heart does not