Up Again After Perinatal Stroke: Mimi & Mom, Helene

Mimi, perinatal stroke survivor, now 17 years old

  1. The most important thing I learned in helping my daughter overcome
    the effects of a childhood stroke is to never be afraid to question the
    limitations placed on her. Whenever I was told something wasn’t possible
    for her to do, I asked “What if it were possible, what could I do then?”
    And with that, I did my best to find solutions and workarounds. Over
    time, my daughter continued to surprise everyone with her brilliant
    determination, endless creativity and tremendous capacity.
  2. Secondly, I made sure to constantly be on the look-out for small
    flickers of hope that might indicate something positive might be
    possible, no matter how tiny and imperceptible it might be to others. To
    me, it would be significant.
  3. Now, seventeen years later, when I see how much possibility and hope
    there actually was despite what I was told at the outset, I wonder what
    might happen if more of us left open the possibility that maybe, just
    maybe, something had even the tiniest possibility of improving, even if
    all the specialists said it could never happen and if we ourselves
    weren’t sure. What if we let one another keep the few flickers of hope
    we might actually have, instead of inadvertently taking them away with
    our words and our actions throughout the day—could that maybe spark
    more? Could that have a positive impact overall, even if it could never
    be measured or proven? I’d like to think so.

(This text is extracted from an essay that appeared in The Globe and
Mail on October 15, 2018 by Helene Louise (helene@michabooks.ca).

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