My name is Jennifer Zoll, I am a physical therapist that has had the honor of working with Juliana Brooks, a beautiful 12- year old girl with Rett Syndrome. Prior to meeting Juj, (her nickname, that I have adopted for my OWN daughter) I had never even heard of Rett Syndrome.
I educated myself and learned as much as I could so I could provide her with the best care possible. Being with Juliana and her family was such an amazing experience, as I got to see what advocates they are for their daughter. I got to see her amazing personality in her eyes and smile and I got to hear it in her laugh.
I got to see the struggle her parents and sister endured when Juliana had to have surgeries on her back and hip. I’ve also been able to experience Juliana’s perseverance and strength as she always battles hard from her setbacks. She is a fighter and a warrior.
I have four daughters of my own, and so often I see them in Juj’s eyes. I hear them in her laugh and I pray every day that a cure is found. It brings tears to my eyes to think of Juliana speaking her first words, I wonder what she would say, what’s the first thing she would want to do. I picture Juj and her sister Olivia running around and swimming in the backyard with Roger and Kristy looking on with pure joy.
I believe with the research that is out there now …a cure WILL happen in my lifetime. I feel connected to this organization because of the amazing families I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know, the hard-working unstoppable girls I’ve gotten to work with, and perhaps because I have four daughters of my own. Our entire family has been inspired! We will do what we can to volunteer and help in whatever capacity we can. My daughters and I have started making homemade birthday cards for individuals with Rett, and we have so much fun doing it.
They love the thought of bringing joy to someone else. They work really hard and try to personalize each one. This year my girls asked if we could make cards every year and the thought of their loving giving spirit filled me with pride. And the answer of course was “ABSOLUTELY YES!!” It’s one small thing we can do to acknowledge and recognize all of the fighters and warriors out there fighting every single day.
Volunteering with Girl Power 2 Cure has been one of the most fulfilling experiences for both me and my family because of the strength we see in every individual and their family. They are an inspiration to everyone, and I am thankful to have the opportunity to not only help them but get to know them and their families.
Girl Power 2 Cure is such an important cause and anyone would be lucky to be a part of it. #untiltheycan #Juliana #Danai #Olivia #Sarah #GP2C