Friends,

I just signed up for Walk-N-Roll for Spina Bifida in Virginia Beach, VA on October 28, 2017. I created Brileigh's Walking Warriors and would love for you to join our team. 
Spina Bifida is the most common birth defect in the United States. It is estimated that 177,000 newborns, children, and adults currently live with this debilitating birth defect.  I decided to form a team and support the Spina Bifida Association becase my daughter Brileigh was born with Spina Bifida in 2005. After having routine blood work done at 16 weeks it was suspected that there may be an issue with the pregnancy.  I was immediately scheduled for a ultrasound at EVMS. That Friday in April was a day I will never forget!  The nurse got really quiet when my husband and I started to ask if everything was ok. She said let me go get the Doctor, at that moment I knew that something was not right. When the doctor came in and started looking around it was then that she preceded to tell us that our baby had Spina Bifida. I remember those words and not knowing what this meant, I was unfamiliar with Spina Bifida at the time.  What did this mean for us, for our baby?   She began to explain what Spina Bifida was and what complications my baby could have at birth and long term. This was my third pregnancy and the only one that I had complications with. The doctor and nurse said she would give my husband and myself a minute alone to discuss the next steps.  We had to make a decision as to whether or not we wanted to have an amniocentesis to see if we were up against anything else besides the Spina Bifida. They would know the results on Monday and also know if we were having a boy or girl. We decided to have the amniocentesis and then further discussed what options we had moving forward with a genetic counselor. We were given a lot of information to go home and read over.  I knew that no matter what the test would show, God had a plan.  The weekend came and went, and on Monday we received our results.  We were expecting  a baby girl and there did not appear to be any other genetic issues.  Like everyone I had questions, such as why was this happening to my baby?   What I did eventually come to understand was that God had chosen this sweet girl for our family because he knew we could handle whatever hurdles would be thrown our way. The remainder of my pregnancy consisted of testing, and meeting lots of physicians who would care for this sweet baby upon her arrival.  It would not be until August 30, 2005 that we would know what we were up against and what we were dealing with completely. When you hear that prayer works it is so true. When I fould out at 16 weeks I had people praying for my daughter that I didn't even know. When Brileigh was born she stayed in the NICU for 10 days and once we got released we started going to Spina Bifida clinic where we met a team of doctors that would follow Brileigh till she was 18. She had her first surgery the day after she was born to remove her sac on her back and to close the opening on her back that the spinal fluid was coming from. Since that time Brileigh has had an additional surgery at age 2 to untether her spinal cord.   Brileigh is a true ray of Sunshine.  She walks, runs, dances and is truly a very happy girl. Not all children born with Spina Bifida are as lucky as my girl.  She may have her struggles, but she is very blessed and lives a fairly normal life.  I am hopeful that this Walk-N-Roll will help spread awareness and raise money needed for research to continue the fight! 
When you join Brileigh's Walking Warriors  we will raise awareness together, make team t-shirts and posters, strive to reach our team fundraising goal, and finally walk or roll as one team this fall. Please join Brileigh's Walking Warriors today and agree to celebrate with us on October 28, 2017. 
Registration is free and there is no cost to attend, so please join me and register today. If you're unable to attend, please support Brileigh's Walking Warriors through a donation.

Thanks in advance for your generous support! 

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