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‘If we waited 2 more weeks, you would’ve been paralyzed from the neck down.’ I was in and out of consciousness. Death wasn’t the only thing on my mind.’: 15-year-old undergoes brain surgery after feeling dizzy, discovers rare chronic brain condition, Type 1 Chiari Malformation

“I knew something was very wrong. I was barely able to hold myself up. ‘Really Jen? Pull it together.’ No one had answers. All I heard was, ‘I think you’re depressed.’ I felt like someone had filled my head with cement. At this point, I had given up. I convinced myself I was out of my mind. I laid in that MRI machine and lost track of time. I felt like my life was over at 15. The tech pulled up the images on the computer. ‘You’re going to need a neurosurgeon.’”

‘I was told I should be grateful for being able to have kids in the first place.’: Mom advocates for others with postpartum depression, ‘Don’t ever feel alone in this.’

“I remember them pushing on my stomach trying to get it out and seeing the fear in my doctors’ faces. ’Kiera, we are going to have to take you right into surgery.’ I couldn’t believe it. Was it something I did? Where is everyone talking about the complications that can go wrong? I try and remember that having two healthy, fed kids is all that matters.”

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