2015 Boston Marathon runner: Melanie Harmon

Above: A personal connection is propelling one Southborough mother over Heartbreak Hill to help fund a cure for Epilepsy (Images from fundraising and charity websites)

Southborough has always had an impressive showing at the Boston Marathon, and this year is no exception.

On Monday, April 20, nineteen Southborough residents will don a bib a run to run. Many will be raising funds for important causes in the process.

Every runner has a story, and from now until marathon day, I’ll feature as many as I can.

[If you’re running the Boston Marathon and would like to have your story featured, drop me a line at mysouthborough@gmail.com]

Today’s feature focuses on Melanie Harmon. Harmon is raising funds for FACES, Finding a Cure for Epilepsy and Seiszures at NYU Langone Medical Center.

It’s a very personal cause as the mother of a child with the condition:

At the age of six, Emily was diagnosed with Absence Epilepsy. It was a seemingly benign condition; most children respond well to medication, and will eventually outgrow it. Unfortunately, Emily was not in that majority, and she, our family, and her medical team at NYU have been working tirelessly to gain control of her seizures. 

Under the expert care of Dr. Orrin Devinsky, Emily began a new medication and the modified Ketogenic Diet in June of 2014.

At long last, we are finally seeing the progress for which we have hoped and prayed.Emily’s last seen seizure was mid-January 2015. A 48-hour ambulatory EEG showed no seizures, but a few epileptic spikes. She will have repeat EEGs every few months to monitor her progress. In the meantime, each day without a seizure is a gift, and we pray that Emily’s seizure- free streak continues. In the best case scenario, she still faces years of blood tests, EEGS, medication and compliance with her very strict diet.

Yet right now, Emily is one of the lucky ones. There are countless adults and children struggling to control their epilepsy, and countless of people around the world who will be diagnosed with Epilepsy each day. FACES’ mission, to find a cure for Epilepsy, via cutting-edge research and studies, is our mission too.

When one is diagnosed with Epilepsy, there is much fear, anxiety and confusion, but there is always hope. FACES embodies this hope…for seizure awareness, control, and eventually, a cure.

Thank you for your love and support, and above all, the gift of hope. (read more)

To pledge your support, click here. To learn more about FACES, click here.

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