An article in The Sunshine Coast Daily - Life & Style Weekend Magazine published on the Saturday 7th May 2016:
Remarkable young mum Niki Antram is determined her disabled son Jimmy will never miss out on life’s adventures
BY Layne Whitburn
Motherhood. One word, more than one million different situations. For Niki Antram, her motherly role doesn’t
quite fit the ordinary description. Niki had Jimmy when she was 17-years-old. Sure, being a young mum is difficult. But what she was about to find out gives the term ‘difficult’ a whole new meaning.It all begun when Jimmy was declared legally blind at just two months of age.
Jimmy has a rare condition called Panhypopituitarism. In other words, he suffers mental and physical disabilities. Despite the heartache, Niki was blessed with a beautiful boy, and her new role as a mother had already begun. But she isn’t just any mother, Niki is Jimmy’s mother.
Just as any parent goes through the tiring baby stage, an ordinary night with Jimmy is no longer tiring, it’s just life.“Sleep for me has always been interrupted, and if I get a goodnight’s sleep where I don’t wake up at least once, then it’s a miracle,” Niki said.“I’m still having to get out of bed to check on him every night and maybe change his nappy.” Unlike most 21-year-olds, Jimmy is 100 per cent reliable on his mother. “I have to shower him, dress and feed him,” she said. “He can walk slightly with his cane but long distance walking is too much. “Sometimes I’ll even piggyback him, which he loves and he is very small so it’s not too difficult for me.”
Sure, it doesn’t require muscular strength to piggyback Jimmy, but the emotional strength from Niki can only be defined by one phrase. Motherly love. “I am Jimmy’s Mum and to me this is normal,” she said. “Sometimes it will get me down, but that can happen to any parent.” While the mother and son have their ups and downs, flips and turns, Niki has a bright path for their future.
“I see so many people who go travelling and venturing around the world and that has always been my biggest wish,” she said. “I thought I would never be able to do this but I’ve decided to start a blog with Jimmy and show him the world through my eyes.“Also I want to show people the things you think you can’t do, you actually can regardless of your situation.”
Her new blog, Niki and Jimmy: His World, My Vision, encourages the duo to chase life’s adventures, no matter the circumstances. While the circumstances aren’t ideal, the mother and son are blessed with a bond so powerful, their life is filled with laughter, smiles and lots of love. There may be more than one million different kind of mothers, but Niki truely is one in a million. Despite the unfortunate and unfair diagnosis, Jimmy is so lucky to have a mother like Niki.
Niki Antram was 17 when she gave birth to Jimmy who was diagnosed mental and physical disabilities. With love, laughter – and the occasional piggyback – the pair face all life’s obstacles together.
PHOTOS: THOMAS DONOGHOE