None of the stories or pictures on these pages may be used without the express written permission of the Pediatric Stroke Network and/or the parents of these children. These stories are copyrighted by the intellectual property law. All stories are original submissions written by parents.

    My name is Darby and I am a 20 year old single mother of a beautiful 2 1/2 year old lil girl, Dakota.  I had a normal pregnancy and an extremely fast natural birth with no medical interventions.  She had all 9 and 10's on her APGAR and besides sickle cell trait everything was reported normal.  It wasn't until she began to walk at 1 year old that I thought something might be wrong.  She was very unsteady and always kept her right arm at about waist level.  When I asked her pediatrician he told me she still hadn't mastered balance yet and that she would grow out of it. 

    At her 18 mos checkup I once again brought it up and was told nothing was wrong.  One day my friend told me she met a child who walked the way Dakota does and that she had had a stroke, I basically cussed her out and asked how she could imply anything that horrible.  Well, it wasn't until Dakota's 2 year check up that I made the doctor actually watch her for a few minutes and he decided to send me to a neurologist because she may have a shortened heel cord.  And that was all he said, so on November 12th I went to see Dr. Taylor who basically shocked me by saying he believes that Dakota had an in utero stroke which caused cerebral palsy. 

    I was shocked. We still aren't sure yet if this is correct but I already know.  Mothers instinct I guess.  Well, she already has an MRI and EEG scheduled and her pt and ot evals are coming up soon.  I am boggled by all of these medical appointments but I just want her to be healthy and happy. 

    I am just so shocked that I never saw any signs when she was younger, but what can I do besides accept the facts that have been placed on my table?  It is very frustrating to deal with but I know being a part of this network will help answer my questions and what not.  We also found out that her stroke more than likely will only affect her motor skills on her right side and none of her higher learning skills (in fact her pediatrician said she was at a 4 year olds intelligence and speech level) WOW! He also stated that thankfully her cerebral palsy will not be progressive. 

    So I just take everything one at a time and I am just grateful to have my angel with me.

        Darby, Dakota's Mom


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This page created on 3/11/2003
This page last updated 3/11/2003