“When Numita smiles at you, it is like receiving the most beautiful gift,” says Sara Knight, Founder of The Sweet Julia Grace Foundation.
Raindancer Numita keeps this sweet smile on his face every day despite the fact that his life is filled with challenges. At the age of six, Numita, was a typical little boy who spent his days swimming, riding his bike, playing waterpolo with his dad, reading, drawing, and playing legos with his little brother; when he suffered a near death stroke caused by an undiagnosed brain Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM). This life changing and sudden illness left Numita with chronic seizures, a traumatic brain injury, and completely dependent on his family for all of his needs.
After years of seemingly hopeless times that brought his parents to their knees not being able to comfort him, he is now at peace and teaching others how to be happy no matter what problems you face.
Numita's sudden illness changed his life completely. When Sara met Numita and his family, his parents had turned their main floor into Numita's bedroom. He was sleeping in the dining room and his parents were sleeping in the living room so that they could better care for him throughout the night. Numita's mom, Lula shared that before Numita's illness, he and his little brother Mario shared a bedroom, and her dream was to one day get Numita back upstairs so that he and his brother could once again share a room together.
"The bond these two brothers share, will stop you in your tracks and make your heart smile. Seeing Mario, stop the world just to look into his brothers eyes to make him smile and laugh, as if to say, 'Numita, I'm here, and so are you', reminds me so much of the bond that Julia Grace had with her brother Cameron. Raindancer siblings learn at a young age compassion and unconditional love. They are the best example to all of us, on how we should treat each other, and especially their treasured siblings," Sara says.
After much discussion Team SJGF and Numita's family decided that the best gift for Numita would be a room makeover so that he could finally, after years of sleeping downstairs, return upstairs to his bedroom. But instead of doing one room makeover, SJGF took on the task of two amazing Star Wars themed bedrooms for two amazing brothers. Because they used to share a room, Numita and Mario's parents wanted their bedrooms to feel like they were the same space, so that meant two of everything. Specially customized, matching rooms to call their own, and a bed with a trundle in Mario's room so the boys could have sleepovers together.
Before Pics & Team SJGF working hard:
Numita's brother Mario said it best, “Mommy if I am dreaming please do not wake me up. I don't ever want to forget this day!"
The force is strong with these two! Two courageous brothers, two matching Star Wars themed bedrooms, and a whole lot of JOY! This room makeover included new carpet, new lighting, fresh paint, new beds & furniture, Star Wars everything, and a real life Stormtrooper who guarded the rooms until we were ready for the reveal! The family was gifted a place for cuddling, watching television, and enjoying each other.
While Numita’s needs are ongoing, sometimes joy can bring something medicine can’t. Numita’s mom thanks SJGF for everything they do to help children who are fighting for their lives to enjoy a little bit of childhood. She explains that for families in this situation, there are no easy words of comfort and no way to take their pain away. Showing them you care by standing in their corner, offering concrete help like food, helping around the home, or finding resources they need may be the best way to improve their life quality.
“Taking care of a chronically ill child is one of the most draining and difficult tasks a parent can face. I have learned that within a storm you will find some of the most beautiful people life has to offer and that is what SJGF means to us. They are family; they make us feel we are not alone in this journey. It is such a beautiful community of people that matter to one another, with a shared faith that their needs will be met through commitment and togetherness. The Sweet Julia Grace Foundation has helped us to live our life in a much more normal way. We are so immensely blessed to be part of this amazing foundation,” says Lula.
Numita’s mom has so much wisdom to share with others facing difficult times:
Difficult times don’t last forever, Lula says. She knows that if she gives her worries to God, He will give her the peace her heart needs and this allows her to focus on her son and his recovery path. She also shares that sickness is not the end; “with love, faith, and perseverance, dreams can come true."
A very special thank you to Numita's Aunt Tania for taking this picture of Numita and Sara and turning it into a cherished keepsake for SJGF. Such a special gift.
Watch Numita's Room Reveal: