On July 20th, l981, Meaghan Marvel Claire Zaremba was born into this world. During the next five years she grew strong and healthy ,and was loved by myself, Danielle, her father Michael, and her brothers Brendan and Ryan. Meaghan was full of the promise that every parent believes their child capable of.
In September of 1986 Meaghan’s life in this world ended, only for her to be reborn again, not as the Meaghan we knew, but certainly still as the Meaghan we loved.
Meaghan, her brothers and father were in a car accident, which killed our best friend, seriously injured her father, and her brothers. Meaghan however, sustained the most severe injuries. Suffering from a broken jaw, a broken arm, severe facial lacerations and most significantly a serious brain injury.
On the evening of the accident she was rushed to Sick Children and underwent an eleven hour operation to try and repair what they could. One to two weeks later, another operation to remove a portion of her left frontal lobe due to infection.
Meaghan was not to return to her family for another three months during which she remained in a coma. But finally in mid-December she opened her eyes and from that moment on the determination that was to define Meaghan revealed itself.
I was told after her first operation that Meaghan would more than likely be unable to walk, feed or dress herself or do any of the basic functions that you and I take for granted due to the fact that there was so little brain activity. But I was determined that Meaghan would wake up. I prayed every minute of every day for that miracle. Even so, when she awoke I was totally stunned to see her beautiful eyes again.
The next three months were very difficult for Meaghan and I. I was there fourteen to sixteen hours every day. I was taught how to change her bed, give her a bath, feed her and watch her every move. Physiotherapy and speech therapy produced actual physical pain for Meaghan.
At the end of that time, Meaghan actually walked down, with a walker to the Emergency Room, to say goodbye to all those wonderful nurses and doctors, who originally felt that Meaghan would not make it, only to see her walking down there to show them that yes, miracles really do happen.
Meaghan had been home for five years when she began to get severe headaches. She was diagnosed with hydrocephalus and once again the operations began. Having endured three or four operations again, life seemed to settle back into its routine.
Once more something was going wrong. She began to experience severe dizzy spells. So severe that she had to leave her schooling at grade 10, never to return. That was the beginning of her seizures. These seizures affected her whole right side and left her severely debilitated afterwards. This journey of seizures and toxic medications to reduce them would last until Meaghan was 19. At that time we went to London, Ontario for Meaghan to undergo brain surgery to remove the portion of the brain that was causing these seizures. Again two operations later, they completely removed the balance of her left frontal lobe. Thank God it appears to have worked.
Being under so much stress Meaghan was suffering with anxiety. Not knowing where she fit in and what her life would be like. Tisho’s Music Academy and Pre-School Music Centre came to the rescue. She began by learning the piano. Tisho took her under his wing. What was so absolutely wonderful is that finally someone was treating Meaghan like a normal human being. He worked her hard and gave her no favors. Meaghan loved him for that. She bloomed under his care.
During piano lessons she began also taking vocal lesson. As time has progressed her talents have developed and her confidence increased beyond expectations.
Mary Balinov, Tisho’s wife also took Meaghan under her wing. Mary teaches a tot class and she invited Meaghan to help her. Learning how to plan, and execute different play times and games for the little ones made Meaghan feel on top the world.
Life is finally coming together for Meaghan and I, as her mother, and knowing her better than she knows herself will say with absolute conviction, that had it not been for Mary and Tisho, and the Tisho’s Music Academy, I honestly do not know where Meaghan would be today. Without their professionalism, care and compassion for Meaghan, she would not have developed into the wonderful and vibrant woman she is today.
This scholarship will be given to the young man or woman who most emulates Meaghan’s will to succeed in Tisho’s Music Academy & Pre-School Music Centre. They must exhibit a kindness and compassion for other people and their problems and be willing to put other individuals before themselves.
In closing I would like to say that if I could become half the person that my daughter Meaghan has become in her kindness, compassion, and love for her fellow man, I would leave this world a happy person. Meaghan is my hero!