Sunday, May 31, 2015

Pediatric Stroke Awareness

Lauren & Jillian
I truly believe the people you meet in your life are crossing your path with purpose.  

Moms' biggest support system in our lives is other moms. When I met Lauren Glende, I immediately became comfortable with her kindness, smile and friendly personality.  Our girls were dancing at the same studio together and I was happy to hear they would both be starting K5 at the same school the following year.  We grew to know more of each other in our passing, and what I didn't know of Lauren, was more about her beautiful daughter Jillian.  I was not aware of what challenges Jillian had faced as a younger child until I saw a note come home from my Julia's K5 Class:

"In support of classmate Jillian, please wear purple on Friday for 
Pediatric Stroke Awareness Month."


What?  Pediatric Strokes?  I never heard of such a thing.  I contacted Lauren, Jillian's mother, and asked her more.  If I didn't know about it, I knew there were more moms that should know about it and Lauren graciously sat down with me and took the time to share more about Jillian and her experience with a pediatric stroke.  
Jillian, far right, Julia and friends at playtime

Jillian & Julia were having a "Purple Friday" in their K5 classroom and Lauren was bringing in a purple treat that the kids were very excited about.  Mrs. Olson kindly allowed me to join in on the day and learn a little more as well.

"What is Pediatric Stroke?"  Can anyone raise their hand and share with us?"

It was obvious Mrs. Olson had taken the time to teach and help the students understand Jillian's special needs in the classroom and they were all very excited to have a day just for her. 


"Its when your heart and your body may not be communicating."  This and much more came from the brilliant kindergarten minds as Mrs. Olson called on anxious hands in the classroom.

I was honored that both Mrs. Olson and Lauren let me join in and share the day with them and I was even more honored to have Lauren share with us in her own words her experience in our video below...




Here are some more facts from www.CHASA.org & please note the site referenced by me in the video is WWW.CHASA.ORG! I stand corrected & my apologies!   

A Few Facts About Stroke in Infants, Children, Young Adults and Before Birth
  • Stroke can occur before birth, in infants, children and young adults.
  • Risk of stroke is highest in the first year of life and peaks during the perinatal period (a few weeks before and after birth).
  • Perinatal arterial ischemic stroke is the most common form of stroke in children.
  • Perinatal stroke occurs in 1 in every 2800 live births. This incidence is likely to be an underestimate.*
  • You may also hear terms like fetal stroke, prenatal stroke, and in utero stroke. Your doctor may refer to a stroke that occurs between birth and one month of age as a neonatal stroke.
  • Sixty percent of infants with a stroke diagnosis have specific symptoms such as recurrent focal seizures in the first three days of life. Their stroke will most likely be identified early.
  • However, forty percent of infants with early stroke do not have symptoms and the stroke is recognized later with delays in movement, development, learning, or seizures.
  • The risk of stroke from birth through age 19 is approximately 5 per 100,000 children.
  • Perinatal, neonatal, infant and childhood stroke are some of the most common causes of hemiplegia, hemiparesis, or hemiplegic cerebral palsy in children. Sixty percent of the children who survive a stroke will have permanent neurological problems.
  • We’re sad to report that stroke is one of the top 10 causes of death in children between the ages of 1 and 19 years.
While I do realize this blog barely scratches the surface on how much more there is to know, I am still in the process of learning more about Pediatric Stroke and spreading more awareness of it, please take the time to do so as well. 

Like I said in the video, when my Cameron was having "feveral seizures", I first processed it as a "stroke" and my family said, "no way do kids have strokes Connie".  Be aware of this, they do, and the sooner the right resources are found, the sooner the child can move forward living a stronger, healthier life.

Jillian & Mrs. Kasar
Lauren & I are both very blessed to have our kids attend such a great school with all the help, education and tools our kids need for a better tomorrow.   Especially for special teachers that have helped Jillian on her journey like Mrs. Kasar & Mrs. Buck that take the time with her one on one to achieving her many goals.

I'd like to thank Lauren for her time & sharing this journey with us, and Jillian for being the fun loving friend to my Julia in their Kindergarten class with more fun for future years to come!  

To Mrs. Olson, always the kind, loving teacher that I've been thankful to have for 3 out of my 4 kids so far!  Thank you so much for sharing your classroom with us to interview and for all you say and do with our children everyday. Mrs. Olson was also a featured Mom sharing her journey of Breast Cancer with us, definitely a mom of #strength #courage #love & more!  Read more of her courageous battle @ STRENGTH from Aug. 6, 2014 Post.

Stay Strong Moms, Stay the Course, and help us spread the Pediatric Stroke Awareness together!
Like their Facebook page for current, up to date events and opportunities to get involved!
CHASA; Children's Hemiplegia & Stroke Association
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Great Brain Power Food for our children that I love to share is a DNA Miracles Omega 3 Supplement.
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