Becky Boere admits it was hard to send her son to his first day of school.
The Wyoming woman was experiencing more than a mother’s jitters about letting a little one start a new chapter in their lives; Brayden has Epilepsy and would have seizures at least once a day when he was a young child.
The little boy spent an entire month in hospital as doctors tried different medications to ease his seizures. At one point he took 12 pills a day to control them.
As hard as it was, Boere packed his lunch and brought him to Holy Rosary School that first day. “I knew he had to come, but it was hard,” she admitted recently, wiping tears from her eyes.
That first day was made easier by understanding staff and students at Holy Rosary. “He had an EA (educational assistant) with him all day. He wore a hockey helmet (to protect his head),” says Boere. The school also had assemblies to explain Brayden’s condition and to show students how they could help if he had a seizure.
You might think that would set Brayden up as a bit of a target for teasing, but Boere says there was never anything but kindness. “One of Brayden’s classmates was upset because he couldn’t wear a hockey helmet to school.”
Brayden, who is now in Grade 7, flourished in school. He only has had one seizure in all the time he has attended Holy Rosary. Even doctors are at a loss to explain his miraculous recovery from Epilepsy – a disease which could have left him bedridden and in a vegetative state.
The Boere’s have not forgotten their school’s kindness. Each year Brayden and his mom run a fundraising event on Purple Day – a day set aside to raise awareness of Epilepsy. This year, the whole school donned purple and raised $555. “I think this is the most purple this school has been,” Boere said at the Purple Day event March 26. The money Holy Rosary raised will be given to the family of another student with Epilepsy who attends high school in Sarnia.