Nino Maghlaperidze, 35, Kutaisi

„Saba is 11 years old. He is a rather good-looking, emotional and friendly child. You feel only warmth and positive emotions coming from him. We noticed that Saba had problems when he was 4 years old. He could not speak. He did not have any visible physical or other disabilities. I understand now, and I realized after my second child was born, that Saba had some developmental delays from a very early age. But it was not apparent. So we followed a routine, hoping that something would change by itself and Saba would start talking. When he turned four we decided to do the MRI test, which showed that Saba’s brain was damaged. To put it simply, there was no connection between two hemispheres and they worked independently from each other. We do not know what Saba will do and how he will develop. Saba needs one person to take care of him during the day. My husband left me two years ago. He abandoned the family so I have had to do everything alone since. And I also have to work. Of course grandmothers and my father have helped me. I think Saba’s father ran away from Saba. He was afraid to communicate with the child. Both Saba and I have tried to assure him that he should not be afraid to communicate with Saba and that Saba is a very cool guy. I am struggling to find a way to teach Saba to take care of himself independently without having another person around all the time. I say that I am Saba Sebua’s mother and never say the opposite – that he is my child. I had lived with my husband for 10 years. He was not a very devoted father during that time either. He seemed always busy. He always worked and did not have time for children. I found out after the divorce that he was not that busy. His role as a father was restricted to buying toys for children, driving them to some place and picking them up. This is why I was neither surprised nor offended by his indifference. But I did not really expect that he would leave us for good. I had a rather hard time getting through this and tried to get him back. But now I think I am better off. He used to make me uncomfortable in many ways. For example, when he returned home the table had to be already set with a ready meal on it. He would start arguing if his dinner was a bit late. His coming home was always associated with a lot of fuss and tension in the family because I had to make sure everything was ready. One more thing, I like taking pictures very much. He never wanted that. So I lost my enthusiasm and stopped taking pictures. Now Saba and I take as many pictures as we want and I do not get uncomfortable because of my husband coming home. To make a long story short, I have realized that I can do more for my children and myself without him than with him and I feel very good“.