Olivia Hope and her twin sister Hailey were born in December of 2004 at 37 and-a-half weeks after a normal pregnancy. Livy was born with cortical dysplasia (a brain malformation) that resulted in multifocal partial epilepsy, cerebral palsy and other disabilities. Livy’s first seizure occurred only hours after birth. She spent the first nine months of her life at All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg, Boston Children’s Hospital and the Suncoast Hospice House in Largo, FL. She finally came home to us in September of 2005.
Livy underwent a lobectomy of her left temporal and occipital lobes when she was 15 months old and a functional hemispherectomy when she was four to try and alleviate her seizures. Although the number of her seizures has been reduced, she continues to have them on a regular basis some lasting as long as 45 minutes to an hour. She has had many hospital visits due to uncontrolled seizures, broken bones and other various medical issues. She is not able to walk or talk and she is completely reliant on her family for care.
Livy has not gone a day of her life without seizure medications. The side effects have caused many issues including hypothyroidism, precocious puberty, bone density loss, hyperammonemia, thickening of the gums and excessive sleepiness. Our hope is that she will have the opportunity to try Charlotte’s Web and one day, be free of the side effects of the medications and the horrible seizures that take so much from her.
Livy is globally delayed but has made many achievements, ones the doctors never thought possible. What we find amazing is that despite all she has been through, Olivia is one of the happiest, most inspiring, and amazing little girls. Her smile radiates love and she welcomes everyone she meets with a warm, glowing demeanor. She has allowed us to stand back and look at life from an entirely new perspective. We are so grateful and honored that she is part of our family.
For more information on Olivia, please visit: www.LivysHope.com