Support Melody Pickard
Since birth, Melody has been our strong, sweet baby girl; even referred to as a miracle baby. We had two children prior to Melody’s birth with no complications. We were not expecting anything different with our third child. After a routine ultrasound in the third trimester, we were referred to a specialist in maternal-fetal medicine. The ultrasound discovered that Melody’s head was measuring smaller than normal. The doctors couldn’t tell us if this was something that would lead to profound developmental delays or if it was nothing to worry about. With little else that we could do, we began to pray.
Initially, Melody’s birth was without complication. It was the day following her birth we noticed some issues. In addition to her small head size, we noticed that she would stiffen and appear to hold her breath. She was placed in the NICU and tests were ordered. After an MRI, Melody was diagnosed with Lissencephaly. Lissencephaly is a rare brain malformation characterized by the absence of normal convolutions (folds) in the cerebral cortex and an abnormally small head. Melody has a moderate case, as she does have some folds in her cerebral cortex. The doctors have provided us with general information about the disorder, but nothing specific to Melody’s long-term health or development.
Shortly after birth Melody began to have seizures. She is on medication for the seizures, which helps, but not without serious side effects. Melody is three years old now and is learning to sit independently, and her head is slowly growing. We see that she is progressing, but very slowly. The seizures seem to stand in the way of Melody’s development and we’re left wondering what the next step is for our daughter.
We began researching different treatment options for Melody. We learned about Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) and the success it has had in treating seizures. Conductive Education (CE), an intensive and holistic approach to educating individuals, is also beneficial for those with neuromotor disabilities. We found a facility in Northwest Ohio called Sara’s Garden that offers both services. Melody has received 3 rounds of 40 HBOT treatments. With each round, we have seen remarkable improvements. Each time she went through treatment her quality of sleep and appetite improved. Also, we noticed, and her friends and family also noticed, that her head control got much better. One of the most profound improvements was in her vision and focus. She didn’t have as many blank stares or unfocused vision movements. Partway through one of the rounds of treatments she was tracking things better, finding sounds and controlling her eye movements. With all of this outward progress, it’s so exciting to think of how the oxygen treatments are helping her on the inside that we can’t even see!
Unfortunately, in the United States insurance will often not reimburse for HBOT and CE even though there is an acknowledgment that it may be therapeutic. That is why we could really use your help. HBOT for Melody’s condition is only $100 per treatment and CE is $35 per hour at Sara’s Garden. However, since our plan is for Melody to continue receiving HBOT treatments and CE that cost adds up quickly.
If you could assist us with the cost (or even just part of the cost) of a single $100 HBOT treatment or one hour of Conductive Education it would help reduce our overall expenses greatly. 100% of the funds received go into an account in Melody’s name and will be used for her treatments and services. Any contribution made would be considered a tax-deductible donation as Sara’s Garden is a 501(c)(3) non-profit facility. Checks can be made out to Sara’s Garden with Melody’s name on a sheet of paper accompanying the check. Please do NOT write her name directly on the check. You can also donate online via credit card by clicking on the “donate now” button below.
Thank you for reading our story and considering a donation for Melody.
The family of Melody Pickard
Sara’s Garden is a 501(c)(3) organization. Your charitable contribution is tax deductible under 501(c)(3) of the IRS code, to the extent allowed by law. A receipt will be sent to you after your pledge has been received to use for tax purposes.