Child abandonment is a reality. The reasons for this tragic occurrence are as diverse and unique as the people involved. Even though it is evident that nothing more could be as devastating for a child, the motivating factors aren’t always wholly ununderstandable. The abandonment of a child takes place where a parent, guardian, or person in charge of a child deserts a child entirely without regard to the child’s physical health, safety, and welfare. Child abandonment also occurs when the parents do not provide the child under their same roof with the care required.

When Gabe was just a baby, he was rejected by his mother because he was born with a deformity. He was just a few days old when he lost everything. He was born in Brazil, and when he was only two days old, his mother left him at an orphanage. When the mother saw him, she was disappointed and decided to abandon him. There he was, lying alone in a hospital bed all day. Gabe’s condition meant that his chance of being adopted was merely nothing. But one mother would soon change everything. Gabe was born in Brazil, without any arms or legs. The doctors soon realized that he had a rare condition called Hanhart syndrome, characterized by underdeveloped limbs, mouth and jaw. In Gabe’s case, none of his limbs grew at all.

Gabe’s birth mother didn’t want him, so she left him there at the hospital. When the nurse lift the baby’s blanket, she was stunned – she realized that the baby didn’t have arms or legs. Gabe’s future looked bleak. He seemed destined to a lonely life confined to a hospital bed. The chances of him being adopted were very small, because he didn’t look like the other children at all. But one day in the United States, Janelle saw Gabe’s picture in a supermarket and decided that she wanted to help him. Many people who passed the picture must have felt the same way, but Janelle couldn’t get the toddler out of her mind. Instinctively, Janelle knew she wanted to give this child a home. Janelle and her husband, who live in Ohio, already had 13 children, adding Gabe to the family wasn’t an easy decision.

Janelle managed to track down the oprhanage where Gabe lived and set the adoption process into motion. The adoption didn’t move quickly, but after the paperwork was finished, Janelle and her husband, Ron, were finally able to go the airport and pick up their long-awaited son. It was love at first sight. Gabe arrived when he was an infant and absolutely thrived with his family. From a young age Gabe started using a wheelchair but his parents were determined that their son would be as independent as possible. When he was 12 years old, Gabe could do almost everything that other children his age could do, despite his disabilities. He could dress himself, walk, eat, and swim. And he could even walk up stairs without help. After graduating from high school Gabe has continued to prove his independence, moving out of the family home and embarking on a career as a motivational speaker. The boy’s parents wanted him to become independent and not need to depend on others his whole life. And as his confidence as a dancer has grown, Gabe is now pursuing a career as a motivational speaker. He’s also a huge influencer on social media – his Instagram is big, with thousands of followers who follow Gabe’s every move.

Featured Image – Gabe, when he was a baby