Thea, our little wildflower, was born with Gould Syndrome, an extremely rare genetic disorder that caused a stroke before she was born. As a result of the stroke and wide-spread brain damage, Thea was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy, Epilepsy, and several other corresponding medical conditions. As parents, we quickly felt the impact complex medical needs can make on not only a baby, but also a family unit. Due to lengthy hospitalizations, frequent visits to the children’s hospital, sleepless nights, and constant fear for our baby, we needed support more than ever. Thankfully, our family, friends, and community rallied around not only Thea, but our entire family. Our world now has more kindness, more empathy, and more love, all because of Thea.
Throughout our journey thus far, we have witnessed firsthand the overwhelming degree of need these families experience. Growing Wildflowers, established in December of 2021, has become our way of not only honoring Thea, but also thanking those who have helped us, through the spreading of love and kindness to other families, just like ours. Thea is our reason.
What once seemed like a dream, has now become an organization dedicated to supporting children and families with complex medical needs across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania through financial scholarships, education, and advocacy.
Thea lives at home in Hamburg, Pennsylvania, with her father, Josh, mother, Nikki, big sister, Mila, and fur-brother, Thor. She is happiest when she hears her sister’s voice, is cuddled in the arms of her mommy and daddy, and when she is surrounded by her friends and family.
The logo was thoughtfully designed by Thea’s mother, Nikki, who envisioned an image that was both meaningful and beautiful. The idea was brought to life by a dear family friend, Heather Yoder, whom took Nikki’s dream and put it on paper. The logo shows three flowers, strongly standing together, linked by a common stem. The flower in the center, a violet, represents Thea. The flowers on each side represent two other amazing babies, both born with Gould Syndrome. An aster and a chrysanthemum with a stem forever entwined, representing the indescribable bond created between our families. Like a wildflower, sweet Theo, pictured below, has a smile that lights up a room.