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Shama's Polymicrogyria Fund

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If you recall, just over a year ago, Shama Ko suffered what would be the first of many in a series of seizures and medical setbacks. Her epileptic grand mal seizures would give way to diagnoses of bilateral polymicrogyria and gray matter heterotopia, both neurological disorders of the brain. The symptoms associated with gray matter heterotopia are generalized as epileptic in nature. The disorder is often times symptomatic of another cause, in this case, bilateral polymicrogyria. Bilateral polymicrogyria has other far reaching symptoms such as muscle weakness, chronic fatigue, problems with speech and swallowing, and possible paralysis. Shama’s symptoms are partially managed with extensive medications, experimental remedies and therapies. With the passing of time, multiple diagnoses, Shama returning home to her family and declaring battle against her ailments; the questions still far outweigh the answers she has received and her fight is just beginning. She was on track to achieve the goals she set for herself both on and off the mat. She busied herself with her passions: people, photography and the Girls in Gis organization that was taking off in leaps and bounds. Her caring and tenacious spirit is what allowed her to excel. Her hopes and dreams, while deferred, are not insurmountable. Victory is always possible for the person who refuses to stop fighting…and that is just the fighter that Shama is. Make no mistake about it, this battle is uphill and one that seemingly has no end in sight. The financial, physical and mental strain seems too much to bear. Our vibrant Shama’s strength and the support of friends and family are enough to overcome it. Shama is in the final’s match of her life. Her opponent is her own body. The reward: a life fulfilled.

Anyone who has met Shama knows that she is a lover of all things Jiu Jitsu. She is passionate about getting people on the mat and building a community where there is support and camaraderie for the greater of us in this sport. This fervor is not unique to Shama only as these attributes are weaved throughout the fiber of our Jiu Jitsu community. In the spirit of that, a group of her peers and fellow BJJ practitioners in Colorado got together to create a calendar where the sales will go towards Shama’s medical expenses. This Gofundme account is set up to collect money to assist with Shama’s mounting medical bills. Donors who contribute $25 or more by November 28th will receive one of the 2016 calendars created in support of Shama. Help us support this amazing lady in her journey to get back to being whole and getting back in the driver seat of her life’s journey.

Organizer and beneficiary

Sharicka Long-O' Neill
Littleton, CO
Shama Ko

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