With nearly two grown children, Kelli Dabek said there was plenty of room in her heart and in her home for 9-year-old Jashia.

“We knew what we had to do. My whole family. We knew what we wanted to do," Dabek said.

It was on September 1 that Dabek officially adopted the little boy with special needs. She'd been his nurse practically since he was born. So, she knew exactly what she was getting into.

"He was born prematurely. He was born at 23 weeks," she said.

Dabek added that Jashia spent four years in a rehab home after his mother unexpectedly passed away. He then went into the foster care system. Dabek quickly became certified for emergency foster care and took him home.

That was two years ago. Jashia is doing much better now. You can often find him putting on his helmet and taking off on his bike in their Ballston Spa neighborhood.

He has a long list of illnesses and disorders, from chronic respiratory failure to epilepsy, asthma, and developmental issues. He had a tracheostomy, where doctors put a tube in his throat to help him breathe, speak, and swallow.

Kelli's two girls, who are both in college, chip in whenever possible.

"I’ve got school work and I have two jobs. I’m always busy," said Dabek's younger daughter Alexa Dabek. "He’ll come to dinner with me and my friends. All my friends love him."

Hayley Dabek, Kelli’s oldest, is officially an aide, helping Jashia with schoolwork, his regiment of medication, and food for his special diet.

They all admit it hasn't always been easy on the family. But without him, without his special personality, they say their house would never be the same.

"But we’ve gotten used to it within the past two years. It’s just gotten easier," Hayley said.

"It’s like everyday life for us. We’ve known him for so long. It was just a natural thing for us to do," Kelli concluded.