Once predicted not to make it to her first birthday, Sadie Higuera of San Diego, CA celebrated turning seven earlier this year with a neighborhood cruise night dedicated in her honor. For Sadie, born with a rare degenerative disorder, it was a milestone her family feared would never arrive.
Sadie, along with her father Brian, her mother Damaris, and her older sisters Dina and Sophia, are among the more than 150 families supported by ECHO, a non-profit organization that assists families with donations of cannabinoid-based products and financial assistance. We at Kannaway proudly support ECHO by donating more than $2 million in health-supporting CBD products.
Our team is humbled by the Higueras’ perseverance and we feel privileged to have gotten to know them. Sadie’s story continues to touch and inspire us everyday. We invite you to meet Sadie and the entire Higuera family in this month’s ECHO Family Spotlight.
Sadie Continues to Achieve Milestones
This morning was a busy one in the Higuera household, as seven-year old Sadie Higuera and her family prepared for the first day of the 2020-21 school year. Brian and Damaris awoke early to take care of themselves before getting the girls ready for the school day ahead, an elaborate routine that involves flushing Sadie’s kidneys, changing and preparing her waterproof pads, and assembling her meals and water for the day that will be given by the nurse. Damaris then dropped off Sadie and older sisters Dina (10) and Sophia (8), a process much easier now that the three girls are on the same campus.
It’s a morning routine that seven years ago seemed improbable. Shortly after Sadie was born, doctors gave Brian and Damaris a dire outlook for their daughter. Sadie wasn’t expected to live beyond a few months, and the harsh medications meant to treat her severe symptoms were not only ineffective, but they left her bloated and feeling sickly. Brian and Damaris seemingly faced a terrible decision: Allow their daughter to continue suffering or follow a physician’s suggestion to give her medication that would make her more comfortable but essentially end her life.
That was roughly six years ago. The “hero” drug was not a course of action Brian and Damaris were willing to take, and they labored to find something else. It is through that determination that Sadie has achieved what she has.
Against all odds, Sadie turned seven in May during pandemic stay-at-home orders. To the family’s surprise, the local Ramona American Graffiti Cruise Night folks in San Diego dedicated their weekly cruise night in her honor.
“We even woke up to our front yard decorated by some caring folks who want to be anonymous,” Brian says.
Sadie grows increasingly more stable every year. At school, she has a mix of therapy and educational programs designed to challenge her cognitive and physical abilities. She attends class for roughly three hours a day, and she receives plenty of specialized attention from the school’s staff, as well as a physical therapist and occupational therapist. They take her through developmental sessions, teaching her sensory and communications skills.
With her older sisters Dina and Sophia always by her side, she is included in everything her family does, including recently participating in a five-kilometer Color Run. She also has an affinity for speed! One of her favorite activities right now is to be pulled on a rocket skateboard made for her by Dina.
“Her smiles while riding her new skateboard is all we need to carry on one day at a time,” Brian shares.
Having seen first-hand the positive impact hemp CBD oil has made in the life of their daughter, Brian and Damaris have become passionate advocates for cannabis access and education, sharing their family’s story to the world.
Brian regularly participates in public speaking events in hopes other families will discover the benefits of hemp CBD oil. Prior to the pandemic, he would travel to events around the country to discuss his family’s experience in hopes of offering comfort and education to families in similar situations. He also serves as the Secretary/Treasurer for the Board of Directors of ECHO.
Supporting Families Like the Higueras Through ECHO
We at Kannaway are proud to support families like the Higueras through our partnership with ECHO. At the heart of ECHO is its sponsorship program, which through the beneficial properties of cannabidiol (CBD) and financial assistance directly improves the lives of families.
Through ECHO, Sadie receives sponsored hemp CBD oil products to promote wellness and help support her quality of life.
“It helps us as a family because it gives us stability,” explains Damaris. “Like if she’s fine, we’re all fine, you know what I mean? We get a sense of normality. She’s good enough to give us a chance to keep on with our lives. To me, that’s how we all get benefit, not only her. She’s fine, we’re all fine.”
You too can make a direct positive impact on families like the Higueras. ECHO is able to deliver CBD products and financial support to more than 150 families largely through donations from the caring Kannaway community.
Please consider supporting families like the Higueras today. With your donation, you will be an integral part of ECHO's mission of supporting families like the Higueras during a time of need.
There are two ways to make a gift to ECHO:
1. Add a Click to Care donation to your Kannaway cart as you make your next Kannaway purchase. Through your Kannaway back office, you can also make a powerful impact in families lives by adding a recurring Click to Care contribution to ECHO through your SmartShip.
2. Make a one-time or recurring donation directly through the ECHO website.
Sadie and her family’s strength and courage in the face of Sadie’s health issues is inspiring to all, and we’re humbled to help them in any way we can.
“It’s hard to express in words just how much ECHO means to us and to other families like us,” Brain shares.