Jobie's Story: LifeScape gave us hope
As a registered nurse, Kate Berger knew the possibilities when her unborn baby was diagnosed with spina bifida. For Kate and her husband, Tyler, their joy in expecting their first child turned to fear and defeat. Spina bifida can result in physical and intellectual disabilities, sometimes severe. It happens in a developing fetus when the neural tube around the spine doesn’t close completely, causing nerve and possible brain damage. “The lesion was high on her spine, which meant much of her movement below that point would likely be impaired,” says Kate.
Their beautiful daughter Jobie was born on January 3rd, 2019, and the Bergers were thrilled to welcome her. They were cautioned, however, to be realistic about her future. She would likely never walk, but they hoped for better outcomes.
Another source of hope is the generosity of our supporters, like you. As 2023 winds down, we hope you’ll make a gift to LifeScape to provide hope and help to families like Jobie’s. We are grateful for the extra support of Blue Tide Car Wash, which is matching all year-end gifts. This will double your gift to ensure people with disabilities get the support they need!
Jobie was a newborn when she began physical therapy with the Birth to 3 Program. Her goals were to sit up and crawl—goals that she accomplished!
When she turned three, her doctor recommended that she start therapy with LifeScape. Jobie began working with LifeScape physical therapist Sarah Peabody in June of 2022. At that point, she was able to stand and was learning to use a walker, called a gait trainer. Her first goal was to become proficient with it. After only six months, though, she didn’t even need a gait trainer – she was walking independently!
Kate credits Jobie’s LifeScape therapist with her fast progress, saying Sarah is very creative in finding ways to motivate Jobie to work. “People don’t understand what a huge advantage there is in going someplace that specializes in pediatrics,” says Kate. She loves that Sarah gives them ideas to try at home and that LifeScape offers trial equipment and connects them to other resources. “The hope that she’s given us—it’s meant so much.”
We hope you’ll make a gift to help ensure LifeScape is there for others with disabilities. With the dollar-for-dollar match of Blue Tide Car Wash, your gift doubles in its impact. If you join our Sustainer Club with a gift of at least $15 a month, that gift will ALSO double, all year long!
Jobie loves her therapy and now is even able to run! She is a big fan of ice cream and loves to paint and play with Play Doh. She also loves to help with her little brother, Eli. Now, when Tyler and Kate watch Jobie run through the sprinkler or play freeze tag, it feels a lot like a miracle.
Kate says their experience with LifeScape has been truly life changing and adds that pediatric services are hard to get in Western South Dakota. “If LifeScape wasn’t there, there’d be nothing,” she says.
LifeScape provides hope and expertise to children and adults with disabilities across South Dakota and beyond. We are proud to be one of a small handful of U.S. organizations providing this level of comprehensive care. We hope you’ll help those in need by making a gift to LifeScape—a gift that will be doubled through the rest of this year. Thank you and may you have a very happy holiday season!