Saturday, March 22, 2008

Extreme Makeover ~ The Carter Family

Mark your calendars ~ Extreme Makeover Home Edition is re-airing the episode about the Carter Family on April 6th. The day before my tethered cord surgery I met Julie Carter at the Variety House ~ she is an amazing woman! Her passion for helping people with Chiari is incredible. If you didn't catch this episode when it aired in October be sure to watch it on April 6th.

"Carter Family" -- The Carters of Billings, MT were surprised to receive the news that Ty and the gang will transform their current home of a chicken coop into the home of their dreams in just seven days on "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition," SUNDAY, APRIL 6 (8:00-9:00 p.m., ET) on ABC. (Rebroadcast. OAD 10/21/07)

Julie Carter suffers from a genetic disorder known as Chiari Malformation, as does her 21-year-old daughter, Jade. She fears her other two daughters may have it as well. Julie and Jade have had several brain surgeries costing over $500,000. This condition has over 85 symptoms -- which makes it very easy to misdiagnose -- and causes depression and chronic fatigue. Julie has made it her passion to spread awareness of the rare disorder and has become a hero to thousands. She writes a monthly newsletter to Chiari patients, providing them support, compassion and valuable information, which she assembles and distributes with her own money. She also started Chiari People of Montana, a support group. With her success, she was recently asked to run the first Chiari Malformation chapter in Billings. This is a bittersweet honor, since her makeshift office is hardly suitable for getting out her newsletters.

Julie is so consumed with helping others that she rarely thinks of her own living situation -- which is a refurbished chicken coup -- but the astronomical medical bills are a regular reminder that there's little chance their house will ever be fixed. From the outside their home looks like a long warehouse; the exterior walls are buckling and some of the windows are cracked, which makes it tough in the brutal Montana winter. They've made the best of the interior, but the cracks in the floor and the unusable space makes heating the place expensive. It's now up to the design team to get this family out of the chicken coop and into a healthy house, and to reward this selfless mother with a state of the art facility where she can run the Billings chapter of Chiari. While Ty and the designers, local builder Jeff Junkert Construction, Inc. and hundreds of volunteers and workers are rebuilding their home, the Carter family will go on vacation at the Hilton Times Square in New York City.

Source: ABC

1 comment:

Caroline said...

Hi Lace,

Just dropping by to say hi. Sorry it's been a while. My old but not so good friend nausea has been making my life rough. It's difficult to get motivated to do much when you are sooooo nauseated everday.

I am sorry to see that some of your symptoms are returning. It will be interesting to see what your follow up MRI shows. Whatever the future holds though I know you will handle it with strength and grace.

Thanks for posting that about the Carter family re-airing. I have folks asking me where to find that episode all the time so this is great.

Hugs sent your way,

Caroline