When Whitney was 20 weeks pregnant with Roman, her ultrasound showed an alarming diagnosis. The growing little boy inside Whitney’s tummy has spina bifida myelomeningocele, a condition that affects the development of the neural tube which, in turn, a severe defect in the spinal cord and its bones. Those with spina bifida have an opening in their spine that affects a person’s ability to move.
For some parents, a video of their child taking their first steps is a common milestone that a growing child achieves. But for Whitney Dinkel, her son’s first steps are more than just a milestone, it is a testament that her son, Roman, can win against all odds.
Thus, even before Roman was born, his parents were already informed about things that he may not be able to do. Among the array of physical activities Roman may not be able to experience is walking.
Despite the challenges of spina bifida myelomeningocele, his dutiful and supportive parents, Whitney and Adam, did not lose hope that everything will work out in the end.
“Before he was born, we were told that there was a chance that he wouldn’t be able to walk,” Adam, Roman’s dad shared with ‘Good Morning America.’
“[We were] scared, confused on why this was happening. And fear is really the big kicker, because you want all your children to have a wonderful life.”
Fast forward to 2 years after Roman’s diagnosis of spina bifida myelomeningocele, the viral video of his first steps are inspiring and warming everyone’s hearts.
“Look Maggie!” Roman said while giggling. “I walking, Maggie!” With pride and happiness apparent in his voice, he called the attention of Maggie, their family dog to share his accomplishment!
“He’s a warrior,” Adam said. Indeed, Roman is no less than a warrior. Right after he was born, he immediately underwent a surgery to improve his breathing issues and functional movements in his legs. And by attending his chiropractic and physical therapy with determination and perseverance, he can now walk!
“He’s everybody’s best friend,” Whitney shared, attesting to Roman’s optimistic and cheerful attitude in life. “He could make even the grumpiest person smile.”
True to Whitney’s statement, Roman is an expert in painting a smile on everyone’s faces, especially when people are watching his videos uploaded on his Facebook page.
His Facebook page, Defying Odds: Roman’s Journey shows Roman’s daily progress in defying the odds and overcoming the challenges he is facing living with Spina Bifida.
His photos and videos smiling and laughing as he reach new achievements definitely brighten other people’s mood.
“We have had an overwhelming amount of people wanting to support and/or bless Roman. So we have decided to set up a Go Fund Me account for him. We just can not say thank you enough for all of the love and positivity that has been shared for our sweet Roman.”
True to the picture above, Roman is a legend in the making. He deals with his disability with such a positive attitude and unwavering determination, truly defying the odds and rising above life’s challenges.
Watch the heart-melting video of Roman before, the 2-year-old boy with Spina Bifida. Thanks to his loving, caring, and supportive family, he is able to defy the odds and took his first steps today!