Sam's total hip replacement was an answer to our prayers. He is 100% mobile, no longer requiring the walker or confinement of the wheel chair. I can't even put into words how my heart feels when I see him race through the house or walk up and down the stairs. I often tear up when a Facebook memory comes up and he is in his body brace or wheelchair and I thank God, Sam's skilled surgeon Dr. Clohisy, and Ozaukee Therapy for where we are today. Never ever take for granted the gift of independent mobility. Each day I wake up and I thank God for allowing me but especially Sam to walk.
The video posted on Facebook (link here) right before Sam's surgery absolutely breaks my heart. The amount of pain he was in and how crooked his posture was is just heart breaking. To see him now...walking without pain, easily and not holding his breath, smiling and laughing does all of our hearts good!
Sam is happily doing chores around the house again, getting the mail, taking out the garbage and recycling container, laundry, dishes... Sam has returned to work at J & H Heating where he puts together installation kits, sorts parts, takes care of the garbage and recyclables from the office and does contract work for a local hardware distributor.
I have always wanted all of my children to experience and enjoy volunteering. Sam was a little more challenging to find the right fit but he is now enjoying his own opportunity to give back to the community. We started Sam Smiles Project in February. Sam collects product and monetary donations to assemble hygiene packs for the homeless. All his packs and proceeds go directly to Mr. Bob's Under the Bridge, a 501c3 organization in Cedarburg. Mr. Bob's distributes about 125 hygiene packs a week to the homeless in Milwaukee and the surrounding area. We started our goal at raising $1,000 and in 12 days Sam accomplished that goal through his Go Fund Me page, which can be found here: Sam Smiles Project. We keep all of Sam's donors up to date on his Sam Smiles Facebook page which can be found here: Sam Smiles Facebook. This project is truly a win/win, Sam gets to work on his skill sets of organizing and assembling the hygiene kits. He also uses his own money at the Dollar Tree store to purchase special additions to his kits, like granola bars, cookies or candy. He restocks his bins and makes deliveries and pick ups. He also practices his writing on his Thank You cards. And Sam is giving back and helping the homeless in Milwaukee.
Sam has become a wee bit of a celebrity with both a write up in our local newspaper and a TV interview!!
I am very proud of everything that Sam has accomplished. He has come so far since his total hip replacement 1 1/2 years ago.
The Sam Smiles Project has raised over $3000 and additional product donations.
Sam has delivered to Mr. Bob's Under the Bridge:
24 sets of long underwear
125 hygiene packs
On Friday he will deliver:
75-100 more hygiene packs
168 pair of warm crew socks
72 long sleeve t-shirts
72 pair of insulated gloves