Maia is a cheerful 4 years little girl from Iasi, Romania. Very curious in her nature and eager to learn, obstinately determined and contagiously positive, she loves music and dance, and adores admiring herself in the mirror attempting some dance moves while murmuring a song J She’s very creative with her Legos and reading books in her own language and recently she’s fascinated with Mickey Mouse and his friends’ world.
Maia suffered a cerebrovascular accident (CVA) before she was born, on the night when Marina, her mother, has suffered a preeclampsia while being 37 weeks pregnant (preeclampsia is when a pregnant woman develops high blood pressure and protein in the urine). When Maia was 6 months old, the neurologist diagnosed her with right spastic hemiparesis, namely: sequelae AVC ischemic perinatal territory ACM left, right spastic hemiparesis, symptomatic partial epilepsy. This is a muscle tone and voluntary motor control disorder causing muscular imbalance in her right hand, arm and leg, causing her difficulty walking and speaking.
Maia began recovery at the Children’s Hospital in their hometown Iasi immediately after diagnosis. When she was 8 months old, she suffered the first epilepsy attack and began treatment in Bucharest with injectable Synacten (containing cortisone, a hormone of growth) and anticonvulsant drugs (Depakine). Following this treatment, Maia and her mother went to Sibiu (400km away from Iasi) to start a therapy with Vojta method (www.vojta.com). Progress was visible since early beginnings: when Maia was 13 months old, her motor development was significantly imbalanced compared to her ideal age-specific evolution, while after only few months of therapy she could walk on all fours and sit. She was 2 years old when she took her first steps, but her right foot could hardly touch the ground.
Travelling to Sibiu for 2 weeks of therapy every 3 months, per hospital’s therapy scheme, was not sufficient for Maia’s steady recovery. For this reason, Marina rented a room and moved to Sibiu when Maia was 18 months, keen on Maia receiving daily therapy sessions for continued progress. In the autumn of 2012, together with the therapist, they also decided to get Maia wear orthotics to adjust movement of her right leg (a leg-brace that is worn on the lower leg and foot to support the ankle, hold the foot and ankle in the correct position). Now the orthotics require repalcement since her foot structure has changed, hence Marina will have to travel to Oradea (300km away from Sibiu – their temporary residence city) and invest aprox 450 Euro to replace Maia’s orthotics.
Maia’s recovery is lenghty and costly and – just like running a marathon – it takes great determination and discipline, as well as a dedicated group of supporters. Maia’s therapy incures 500 Euros of monthly expenses including fees for daily recovery sessions following the Vojta method, regular medical examinations, medication and numerous expenses with travels around the country for examinations and regular medical visits.
Marina’s wish is to see her daughter excel in whatever she will love doing, get as far as possible with her recovery and set an example for a Romanian society discriminating children with disability. “I confront daily discrimatory behaviours, but I keep positive and optimistic, focus on Maia’s theraphy and pray every day that she will recover as much as possible of her motor ability. I have never treated Maia as a child with disability, I didn’t want her to feel any different to other children around. We are conscius and have accepted that Maia may not fully recover, but we wish and are determinted to achieve the maximum for her recovery, just like a marathoner reaching the finish line winner.”
I am running the Vienna Marathon on April 14th for Maia’s smile, so that she can continue her therapy and run herself one day! It took 40+ training hours and 400+ km ran to get to the start and I will attempt to complete those 42,192km and cross the finish line for Maia cause! We aim at fundraising 3.000 EUR, to offer 6 months of uninterrupted therapy + the new orthotics that Maia needs! We will appreciate very much your contribution in any amount for Maia’s recovery, to the EURO or RON accounts below!