Born Just Right
DYNAMIC DUO: A NOTE FROM JORDAN’S MOM, JEN
Jordan has always sparkled. Even before she started shooting glitter. People would walk up to her when she was a baby and notice a little extra shine in her eyes. It’s like she was always ready to change perceptions from the start.
Jordan and I are a team. I’m also her mom, so I have to do mom things (like say no sometimes). But we also have a relationship that is a little different because we travel and experience so many things together. First, we were together all the time when she was a baby. I didn’t know what extra things I needed to do for her when she was born, so I took her to a lot of doctors’ appointments. We traveled out of state often to build prosthetics starting when she was ten months old. We attended extra summer camps and events for kids with limb differences starting when Jordan was three. Her brother, Cameron, is four years older, and he got to come along with us sometimes. Their dad (my husband) would attend these events when he could. (My jobs have been a little more flexible through the years.)
I gave Jordan space to find solutions to her challenges. Maybe it’s because I talked to so many other parents of limb-different kids. I knew that I needed to step back and give her room to learn. That’s really hard when you see someone you love struggle. But giving her the chance to discover solutions has also given her brain the space to think up different ideas and have very strong opinions of her own. Yes, that means there are times when we argue. But I often realize she’s a lot like me: strong-willed, confident, and willing to take a stand on issues that matter.
When Jordan was a baby, I worried about what she couldn’t do. I had never experienced the world outside a typically formed body. Every time she figured out a new task, I felt a little less worried. These days, I never assume there is a “can’t” in Jordan’s world. She can do it all, with or without a prosthetic arm helping her out.
I used to be a journalist, and I documented my experiences with Jordan as she’s grown up in an online blog. That gave us more opportunities to talk to and meet kids and families across the country, and even around the world! It’s a gift to get to know so many people and learn from
their life experiences. While Jordan and I can share the lessons we’ve learned through the years, it’s exciting to learn from everyone else at the same time.
Watching Jordan speak up for issues that matter to her was not something I expected as I’ve watched her grow. But she and I both committed to each other that we would do what we can to help others who may not have the same opportunities that have come Jordan’s way. I am proud to be by her side as she shares her thoughts and opinions of the disability world. We wouldn’t be on this adventure if she wasn’t in the lead.