Organized by: Siobhan C
EVENT DATE Aug 18, 2015
Please watch and share the video!
There is a saying : "a woman who moves mountains begins by carrying small stones." Every day, Sophia - a brave young woman bearing a terrible injury to her brain is "carrying those small stones" in her efforts to “move the mountains" that block her path to recovery and is doing so with unfathomable courage and dignity. Sophia is resolute and committed to her recovery, and is making progress. The goal of this fundraiser is to allow Sophia to continue obtaining the targeted physical therapy she needs, and to raise funds for her transport to school. Sophia is so incredibly grateful to everyone who has supported her thus far, and through the video, Sophia hopes to share her journey with all of those who have rooted for her along the way.
Only 28 years old, Sophia is, as anyone who knows her will tell you, a remarkable, beautiful, funny caring, sweet young woman and loyal friend. Through the summer of 2012, Sophia was happy with life. She enjoyed working at Laemmle Theatres, going out with her loving boyfriend Justin and spending time with her many friends.
In October 2012, Sophia was diagnosed with a genetic condition called a "cavernous malformation" on her brainstem, This condition is a result of abnormal blood vessels that form raspberry like clusters in the brain or spinal cord. Because the malformation encroached upon Sophia's brainstem, surgery had to be minimal and her motor functions were severely impaired. She was unable to see, speak, eat, write or walk.
In 2015, after making progress in her recovery for two years, Sophia was told by the doctors that she had to undergo another brain surgery to fully remove the cavernous malformation. While there were risks in the procedure, the surgery fortunately went well, and the remainder of the cavernous malformation was removed. After spending a few weeks recovering in the hospital in 2015, Sophia overcomed the setback of the second surgery, and is now back on her road to recovery.
Serious issues remain, but Sophia has fought her conditions with strength and grace. She has regained her motor functions and is now working to gain better control of her movements. In spite of her nystagmus (continuous bouncing of the eyes), strabithmus (double vision) and ataxia (Inability to coordinate voluntary muscular movements), Sophia has become a great fan of many podcasts, regularly goes out with her friends and boyfriend, and always maintains her wit and sense of humor.
Sophia's targeted physical therapy improves her balance, strength and confidence, but MediCal only covers a minimal number of sessions with her physical therapist, who works in private practice. Sophia has the will to do much more physical therapy in order to gain more physical independence. She very much looks forward to her college courses for victims of brain trauma at Santa Monica College, but because of the distance between classes, she needs assistance in getting to school and traveling between her classes across the quad. Sophia is also in need of frequent optometry because of her continuously changing eye prescription. This additional care is not reimbursable by MediCal and neither Sophia nor her mother can afford to pay for it. Whatever funds we raise will be used strictly for what Sophia's insurance does not cover.