Author Archives: Halsey Blocher

Counting to 22: Each Year Is a Blessing

As my 22nd birthday rapidly approaches, I almost can’t comprehend it. The thought of my birthday has seemed surreal for the past several days. To most people, turning 22 probably isn’t that big of a deal. You don’t get to do anything new. Your friends start to tease you about…

Sidelined: Being Sick When You Have SMA

Being sick tends to take a lot out of people with SMA, and the healing process is often slow. A few days after returning from a family vacation this year, I started to feel ill. My heart rate was quickly rising and I had a slight…

Overcoming Obstacles to Share My Love of Cooking

Like many people, I love to cook. One of my favorite activities at Turnstone’s Adult Day Services program is the monthly cooking class, where I have learned to make all sorts of tasty dishes ranging from homemade peanut butter cups to grilled honey mustard chicken. I’ve also spent many…

My Continuing Journey Toward Treatment

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently announced the approval of Zolgensma (onasemnogene abeparvovec-xioi), the first-ever gene therapy to treat SMA. This amazing news has thrilled the SMA community with its possibilities! Zolgensma opens new doors for increased strength, resistance to illness, and longer lifespans. As…

Want to Pray for a Disabled Person? Ask First

If you live with a visible disability or illness, then there’s a good chance you’ve experienced a stranger coming up to you and asking to pray for you. As someone who has lived for 21 years with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and uses a motorized wheelchair, I have had…

Happy to Help: I’ve Found Fulfillment in Volunteering

Since the age of 3, I’ve been attending Turnstone, a local organization that runs a center for children and adults with disabilities. Over the years, I’ve benefited from the many services and opportunities at Turnstone, including joining a cheer squad, attending teen socials, and participating in therapy and adult day…

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