Meghan King Edmonds, 34, who stars on the Real Housewives of Orange County took to Instagram last Friday to share her son's progress after suffering brain damage.
Little 13-month-old Hart, who suffers from 'irreversible brain damage' (more specifically, Periventricular Leukomalacia), has been going through hyperbaric oxygen therapy to try to encourage his brain to function more than it is currently. Although the success rate of the treatment is case by case in terms of good results, Hart is starting to show major improvements in his motor skills.
"Four times a week either [husband Jim Edmonds] or I 'dive' with Hart in a hyperbaric compressed oxygen chamber (HBOT)," Meghan captions her post. "After 5 dives we are already seeing progress: lifting his left leg on stairs when his right is restrained, bear crawling (perhaps trying to stand?), more willingly taking steps with assistance, and cruising from the couch to the coffee table."
For those who have never heard of Periventricular Leukomalacia (PVL), the Boston Children's Hospital explains it as "damage to the white matter around the fluid-filled ventricles of the brain". Damage to white matter, which is responsible for communication within the brain, can result in a lot of issues including PVL.
Most commonly, PVL is seen in premature babies. Although the cause isn't known, doctors assume white matter gets damaged when the brain isn't receiving enough blood flow. Premature babies are also extremely fragile and their brains can get damaged fairly easily. Once PVL is established, complications such as cerebral palsy, developmental delays and learning disabilities can come later on.
Hart's parents are unsure if it's because of the hyperbaric oxygen treatment, his chiropractor visits, or just simply because he's growing, that his motor skills are improving but they are definitely not questioning it. "Go Hart, go!" she wrote on social media.
Edmonds also recently told Daily Mail that doctors believe Hart's brain trauma is not progressive. She also shared that ever since Hart was born she knew something was off (hello mother's intuition!), even though other people around him thought he was fine. Her instincts ended up being right and about a year later she finally got his diagnosis.
Edmonds also recalls the night she told her husband, Jimmy, Hart's diagnosis. "I explained to Jimmy how we are not somehow compromised or punished for having a child with special needs (whatever that may or may not mean!), we are BLESSED."
Having a special needs child, whatever the cause, is simply that: they have different needs than the majority of children. It doesn't mean they aren't as good as others or they are at a disadvantage. They simply get to experience life differently than the majority.