By Jennifer Welton
My 5 -year-old son Zander has had two brain surgeries. During each, doctors removed portions of his brain. After the second, his recovery was difficult; it took months before he could walk again.
Our hope was that these surgeries would stop the violent seizures my son has suffered from since he was 9 months old — seizures so intense that Zander would sometimes stop breathing. These seizures have also severely slowed his development.
These surgeries didn’t help. Neither did the many strong pharmaceutical drugs we tried, which often had harmful side effects. For years, my husband and I watched our tiny son bravely try treatment after treatment to try to ease the pain and danger of his severe epilepsy. And we have seen these treatments fail.
But recently, Zander is walking backwards for the first time. He lights up when he sees us laugh and responds with laughter of his own. He held a fork for the first time. He’s sleeping through the night, and his seizures have all but stopped.