Jessica McCabe has ADHD. Her message to her mom is tearful and moving.

"This is what I want to say to my mom, who 'drugged' me," Jessica McCabe begins in a voice-over.

McCabe's face pops up on the screen, earnest and direct as she finishes her statement: "Thank you."

The video is the latest in McCabe's series on life with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). In this heartfelt video, McCabe explains how her mom stepped up to help her get treatment.

ADHD affects about 11% of children in the United States, and while the symptoms are often misunderstood, ADHD can make it hard for kids to focus on things that are uninteresting to them, or it can make them hyperactive and fidgety. School, with its standardized learning environment, can be particularly difficult for kids with ADHD. Her voice cracking, McCabe recalls how much she struggled in school as a result of her ADHD before she got help.

Unfortunately, there's a lot of stigma around how (or even if) parents should treat their kids' ADHD. Some people even believe ADHD isn't real at all. As a result, many parents who choose to put their kids on medication find themselves accused of, as McCabe said, "drugging" their children.

McCabe wants her mom to know how much she appreciates her making sure McCabe got the help she needed.

In the video, McCabe recounts how she and her mom worked together to find a psychiatrist and medication that worked for her. It's because of her mom, McCabe says, that she was able to actually focus in school again and was able to avoid so many of the pitfalls that other people — whose ADHD goes untreated and undiagnosed — have to run into.

What really mattered to McCabe wasn't just the treatment, though.

It was the simple fact that her mom listened when she asked for help.

It hurts when someone doesn't believe you, especially if that person is your parent. But McCabe's mom didn't think she was being lazy or just not trying hard enough. She listened when her kid asked for help. And that mattered.

"You believed me," says McCabe. "And when you did, when you took me to a doctor who could explain to me what was going on in my brain, you took away so much shame."

McCabe didn't need to feel inferior, and she didn't need to blame herself. She had someone who listened to her. She had her mom.

Watch McCabe's full, emotional video below:

Medication helped McCabe, but everyone's brain is different. If you're living with ADHD or think you might be undiagnosed, you should work with a professional to find a treatment plan that works for you.

Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
True

Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

Keep Reading Show less

The fasting period of Ramadan observed by Muslims around the world is a both an individual and communal observance. For the individual, it's a time to grow closer to God through sacrifice and detachment from physical desires. For the community, it's a time to gather in joy and fellowship at sunset, breaking bread together after abstaining from food and drink since sunrise.

The COVID-19 pandemic has limited group gatherings in many countries, putting a damper on the communal part of Ramadan. But for one community in Barcelona, Spain, a different faith has stepped up to make the after sunset meal, known as Iftar, as safe as possible for the Muslim community.

According to Reuters, Father Peio Sanchez, Santa Anna's rector, has opened the doors of the Catholic church's open-air cloisters to local Muslims to use for breaking the Ramadan fast. He sees the different faiths coming together as a symbol of civic coexistence.

Keep Reading Show less
Courtesy of CeraVe
True

"I love being a nurse because I have the honor of connecting with my patients during some of their best and some of their worst days and making a difference in their lives is among the most rewarding things that I can do in my own life" - Tenesia Richards, RN

From ushering new life into the world to holding the hand of a patient as they take their last breath, nurses are everyday heroes that deserve our respect and appreciation.

To give back to this community that is always giving so selflessly to others, CeraVe® put out a call to nurses to share their stories for a chance to be featured in Heroes Behind the Masks, a digital content series shining a light on nurses who go above and beyond to provide safe and quality care to patients and their communities.

First up: Tenesia Richards, a labor and delivery nurse working in New York City who, in addition to her regular job, started a community outreach program in a homeless shelter that houses expectant mothers for up to one year postpartum.

Tenesia | Heroes Behind the Masks presented by CeraVe www.youtube.com

Upon learning at a conference that black mothers in the U.S. die at three to four times the rate of white mothers, one of the widest of all racial disparities in women's health, Richards decided to take further action to help her community. She, along with a handful of fellow nurses, volunteered to provide antepartum, childbirth and postpartum education to the women living at the shelter. Additionally, they looked for other ways to boost the spirits of the residents, like throwing baby showers and bringing in guest speakers. When COVID-19 hit and in-person gatherings were no longer possible, Richards and her team found creative workarounds and created holiday care packages for the mothers instead.

Keep Reading Show less