I interview mothers for a small section titled Baby and Me on The Standard. But because of the small space most interviews are cut short therefore, I am posting this one here because I believe there is some lesson to learn from Hellen and Nara.
Hellen is a champion mother of three children. Her last born Nara, a beautiful bubbly soul, is 20 months old. Nara was recently discharged from months of occupational therapy for seizure disorders. Hellen runs an online business and a support group for parents with special needs children.
E: What do you remember about the day you had her?
Hellen: I was thrilled because I had always wanted to have a baby girl since my first two children are boys.
E: How did you choose her name?
Hellen: Her aunt, who is also her godmother, chose the name. I fell in love with it when I heard the meaning. Nara means the bringer of happiness, in the Native American (Red Indians) language. It also has a special connection because she is half Indian.
E: How did you learn about her condition?
Hellen: She had her first convulsion when she was only 10 days old. She was hospitalized and after numerous tests, she was diagnosed with Seizure disorders, episodes of uncontrolled electrical activity in the brain, which was caused by lack of oxygen to the brain during birth. We were advised to start Occupational therapy and medication of which we have followed religiously. Fortunately, Nara has now overcome the condition.
E: How has the journey been?
Hellen: It started with fear and lack of information. I have had to learn and research from my best friend, Google, to understand and ask for the correct medical and physiological help. But that determination to understand and find a solution to Nara’s neurological condition enabled me to reach out to other parents through my organization, Challenged With Hope. Parents in the group support each other, share ideas, school and doctors referrals and also professionals to understanding better ways of helping their kids and themselves.
E: Three words that describe Nara.
Hellen: Charming, sweet and very mischievous
E: Most challenging moment?
Hellen:Well, when Nara was only four months, she had to wear leg braces for 23 hours a day. Whenever I was putting it on, the look in her eyes would tear a cut in my heart. Tracking her milestones has also been difficult but she is on the right track now.
E: What are her favorite things?
Hellen: She loves her bath time, walking in the garden, being outdoors, other babies and helicopters.
You can follow Hellen on her Facebook page called Challenged with Hope .
Some parts of this interview first appeared on The Standard on 26 February 2017