A special friendship
In life its rare to have those friendships which last through your life. It's even harder to make and keep those friendships if you have special needs.
Ethan has no verbal speech. He communicates with us through eye pointing and sounds which indicate whether he's happy or sad.
Having no speech or movement limits him to creating his own relationships.
Initiating a relationship for Ethan, relies on the other person to make the first move and come to him.
Once that initial point of contact has been made Ethan can gauge whether that person likes him by the level of interaction they have with him. Ethan is very receptive and loves attention.
From a very young age Ethan made his best friend for life! They are 2 months apart and absolutely adore each other.
Freya, who now also is his cousin, is amazing with Ethan. She has always looked after Ethan and most of all includes him in everything she does.
Freya enjoys dressing Ethan up and also his chair to make it all colourful.
She takes him into the room where all the children are playing or outside with lots of toys for him to hold and see.
She enjoys helping Ethan to take part in cooking or helping him walk in his walking frame in the garden.
Freya enjoys feeding Ethan and is now also an expert at giving Ethan his water feeds via his button. Her inquisitiveness ensures she knows everything about Ethan.
She is always interested in why Ethan can't do things, the way he learns or the things we can do to help Ethan learn and explore.
Freya has been around Ethans seizures since she was a baby. She's not phased by any of this.
Most 9 year olds would never experience this. Freya has helped swipe Ethans vns and always holds his hand and calms him through them.
She asks questions and understands a little about what is happening when he has them. She is strong and brave but she also worries and can get emotional because she really wants her best friend to be OK.
The comfort and support is my favourite bit of their relationship.
Freya loves to cuddle Ethan and Ethan cuddles and laughs every time he sees Freya.
They have a bond which is unbreakable and I really hope this continues for the rest of their life.
They may be the same age and mostly the same size, (they take it in turns to who's the tallest!) but developmentally they couldn't be more different.
This doesn't affect their friendship and I feel it makes it even more special a bond.
To see Ethan have a special friend who I know will always be there to include him and ensure he's having a good time and that he doesn't miss out, is every mums dream.
I am glad that no matter what life throws at Ethan, Freya will always be by his side.
A special girl who sees Ethan as no different.
I for one am very proud to have her as Ethans best friend.