This is our beautiful 5-year-old angel, Norah Bailey. Norah was born on July 12, 2014 and suffered a massive stroke around the time of her birth. The stroke damaged the entire left side of Norah’s brain causing partial paralysis of her right side, gross & fine motor difficulties as well as developmental delay. She began therapy at 5 months old and up until the age of three, saw multiple therapists 3 times a week.
Shortly after Norah’s third birthday we began noticing some odd behavior that began as an unusual stare. The look soon evolved into a terrified stare accompanied by a strong burst of stiffness and labored breathing. We were terrified. The neurologist soon confirmed that Norah was indeed experiencing seizures – something that was not uncommon given the traumatic brain injury she suffered at birth.
Norah battled with seizure control over the next two years as her episodes began to worsen. At one point she was having up to 12 per day and even experiencing seizures through the night. There were many triggers: unexpected sounds like buzzers, doorbells, knocks on the door, loud voices, clanging of dishes, sneezing, coughing, yelling, pretty much ANYTHING would send her into a seizure. The seizure would then leave her exhausted, confused and she would often scream out of fear and beg to go to bed. She was suffering.
After two years, 7 medications and 4 neurologists we made the gut-wrenching decision to go ahead with brain surgery. This rare type of brain surgery, known as a hemispherectomy, is only performed about 50 times per year in the U.S and only under extreme circumstances in order to reduce the occurrence and severity of seizures. It was our last hope.
On Sept 5, 2019 Norah had brain surgery at Comer’s Children’s Hospital in Chicago and she spent 9 days in intense recovery. She has not had a seizure since.
Surgery has changed Norah’s life. She is a completely different child, who for the first time ever is getting to live life. Although she still has major deficits to overcome and her seizures may return, she has the determination to get through it all. She is loving, caring, funny and her personality really shines! She will soon start therapy to learn to walk and next Fall she will be starting kindergarten. We are working hard to prepare her for BOTH big milestones in her life and are certain a service dog would be life changing.
Last fall our son heard about 4 Paws for Ability at school and he came home excited to share the information. After looking into the organization and seeing how they place service dogs that are trained to alert of seizure activity, assist with mobility issues and redirect behavior meltdowns, it gave me hope. We applied to the 4Paws program and were accepted. We are now on a journey to raise the funds for Norah’s life changing canine companion. Service dogs cost around $50,000 to breed and train. 4 Paws takes care of most of that fee but asks that each family raise $17,000 toward the cost of their dog. We are reaching out and asking for your help in achieving our donation goal.
Any contributions made to help Norah would be greatly appreciated.
If you can help Norah, please visit the 4 Paws Donation Page (http://www.4PawsForAbility.org/donate-now). Please include Norah’s full name on the donation as instruction in the “Description” field of the form on the second page of the Authorize.net donation. Donations can also be made by mailing a check with Norah’s full name on the memo line to:
4 Paws For Ability
In Honor of Norah Bailey
253 Dayton Ave.
Xenia, OH 45385
Thank you for taking the time to read about our princess. She truly is a miracle! 😊