This Christmas will be Jaxon Buell’s second, although the 16-month-old wasn’t expected to live long enough to be born. The Tavares, Florida boy was born missing parts of his brain and skull and diagnosed with microhydranencephaly — doctors told parents Brandon and Brittany that Jaxon would never see or hear or talk, but the toddler, who’s earned the nickname “Jaxon Strong,” now does all three.
In a Facebook post published on Dec. 10, Brandon wrote, “In 15 months of being with us, Jaxon is learning to talk, walk, speak, smile, laugh, communicate, can certainly hear and see, and is making strides to even eat on his own, showing promise of one day kicking the only machine that he is actually dependent on, his feeding pump, and all of this with the severe disability that he has, against the odds, and against the doubts that have been there since before he was born.”
The proud father shared photos of Jaxon meeting Santa, as well as a video of Brittany nuzzling and talking to her baby boy as he babbles and giggles back. Brandon wrote, “Jaxon had one of his best days ever today! He was in a great mood all day and got to meet Santa for the very first time. Tonight, we started watching Rudolph and Jaxon became very talkative with Mommy. Lots of snuggling, lots of talking, and he’s getting better each day with interacting and communicating with us, and now even playing with us. More big milestones for our little guy! #JaxonStrong”
Thousands of people have been inspired by Jaxon’s story, with many commenters on the Jaxon Strong page calling him a “miracle” and one writing, “God is moving mountains with sweet Jaxon. Stand back and watch him go, world.” The family has set up a GoFundMe campaign, and Brittany acknowledges that their thousands of supporters have enabled her to stay at home with Jaxon and help him reach new milestones.
On December 9, she posted on Facebook, “I truly believe that if I went back to work this time last year that Jaxon wouldn’t have gotten as far as he has. His development wouldn’t be as strong as it is and the things he has been able to learn, such as saying ‘I LOVE YOU’ and ‘Momma’ and ‘Daddy’ may have never been learned. The one on one time that I am able to give him numerous times a day is keeping him healthy mentally and physically. Thank you everyone for your continued support and for all of the gifts. We truly feel the love and respect and are very thankful for each and every one of you! Not only are we able to pay our bills but we are able to pay it forward to organizations that research brain malformations in hopes to help other families who come across this condition in the future.”