Banding together Petersfield is taking community goodwill to a whole new level.
where she will undergo life changing surgery that has the potential to cure her of her devastating illness. Hali Gibson, a 14 year old Grade 9 student from Petersfield was recently diagnosed with epilepsy after suffering from extreme symptoms for the past two years. "It has just been an absolute roller coaster," said Gibson's mother, Colleen. "We have been in and out of the doctors and hospital for the past two years just trying to figure out what was wrong with her." Colleen explains Hali's unusual behavior began in the Grade 7 at a school dance, where her brother found her huddled on the floor rocking back and forth. After removing her from the dance and bringing her home, Colleen says that later that evening Gibson who also suffers from Autism Spectrum Disorder fell asleep only later to awake in a horror striken frenzy. "She was screaming, saying that there were people coming to get her. She was awake and her eyes were coach outlet locations in las vegas wide open but she wasn't responding to us, she kept calling for her dad," said Colleen. "We didn't know what was going on." Colleen along with her husband Mike assumed Hali's outburst was a one time nightmare, until it happened again the night before Gibson was slated to give an oral presentation in front of her class. "The night before she was supposed to give this presentation the same thing happened. her waking up and screaming about these people coming to hurt coach outlet stores myrtle beach her," said Colleen. "Eventually it started happening coach outlet usa more often, every time she seemed to get stressed about something." In order to find out what was causing the nightmares, Hali was taken to see a doctor who felt hormones were the problem, saying the episodes were a 'normal teenage hurdle'. "We didn't think it was normal, we had never heard or experienced anything like that before," said Colleen, who adds that eventually the nightmares began happening every night. The couple finally resorted to sending their daughter to see a psychiatrist, who diagnosed Hali with having night terrors, and prescribed her anti depressant medication to deal with the problem. Colleen says she and her husband took the doctors word, until Hali's episodes began happening during the day while at school. It was at that point Colleen says they felt there was something seriously wrong. "We kept telling doctors that it wasn't just stress, it wasn't just night terrors, it had to be something else," said Colleen. "But no one would believe us." At the families persistence, a doctor at Children's Hospital finally ran more in depth tests that discovered that Gibson's so called 'night terrors' were in fact seizures. Frustrated that her daughter's condition wasn't getting better with medication, Colleen says she and her husband pushed to have Hali see an epilepsy surgery specialist in Vancouver after hearing about a brain surgery that promised to help control if not eliminate the illness on the news. "The doctors here kept saying she wasn't going to be a good candidate for the surgery," said Colleen. "They conducted a few tests and almost immediately they diagnosed her with having right frontal lobe seizures," said Colleen. "It was explained to us that she was experiencing fear based seizures that were triggered by emotions or stress, which makes sense because the frontal lobe of the brain deals with personality." Now, the family is only waiting to hear from the Vancouver hospital to secure a date for the two surgeries that will involve the removal of the inflicted area of Gibson's brain. "It's a high risk surgery so of course we're nervous," said Colleen. "But the best case scenario would be that it would significantly improve the state of her seizures, or even get rid of them all together." To help the family who are all planning to accompany Hali to Vancouver with travel and accommodation costs for the approximate month they will be there, members of the Petersfield community are hosting a benefit social in Gibson's honour. "When we heard what was going on we really wanted to do something to help the family," said Sandra Pruden, one of the Petersfield residents who are helping organize the social. "This is a small town with such a caring atmosphere that almost immidietly people starting jumping on board to offer their help." The social will take place at the Petersfield Hall on Sept. 19, and tickets can be purchased for $10 by contacting Sandra Pruden at (204) 738 2668. Pruden will also be selling 'no show' tickets for those wishing to purcahse a ticket to help the cause but aren't planning to attend the social itself, and donations for silent auction prizes are also greatly appreciated. A trust called the Hali Gibson Trust has also been opened with Sunova Credit Union in which donations can be made, and Pruden explains that any money left over from the fundraiser will stay in the trust to help other families in the community deal with medical expenses in the future.
"The Gibson family only wants to use what they need, and the coach canada handbags on sale plan is to keep any extra money in the trust, continue to do fundraisers and allow it to grow," said Pruden. "That way the next time there is a family in need, there will be money there to help them.".
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