Jaelah Jerger's parents thought they had found a solution to their two-year-old daughter's seizures in an unlikely form: cannabis oil.
Research has suggested the CBD, the active ingredient in the oil, may help to alleviate epileptic seizures, but the practice is still very new and many doctors and policymakers remain skeptical.
The oil - which is free of the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, THC - was approved in the Jerger family's home state of Indiana but not, they soon found out, for treating Jaelah's condition.
After initially encouraging them to use the oil if it worked, her parents, Lelah and Jade, say that the same physicians eventually called Child Protective Services on them.
At two, Jaelah (center) has been in and out of two hospitals and another wellness center as her parents Jade (left) and Lelah (right) try to find the best treatment for her epileptic seizures
Lelah, a mother-of-five, noticed that a change would suddenly come over her daughter beginning when Jaelah was only six months old.
The cheery toddler would have what looked like a 'startled reflex,' Lelah says.
'She would be walking around and then just have these jerk, and all of a sudden her arms would go up,' she adds.
Nine months later, in May 2017, Jaelah had an episode so intense that she fell. Lelah rushed her little girl to a hospital - the first of countless trips the family would make.
An EEG at Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health revealed that Jaelah was indeed having epileptic seizures.
That night, someone from the hospital called the Jerger family home and started rattling off medications they recommended to treat Jaelah.
They all seemed to Lelah to have more side effects than benefits. The first drug suggested to her could keep Jaelah from sweating.
Jaelah, two, is an 'outside baby,' her mother says, and this was one of the reasons that she did not want her daughter on a seizure medication that might cause her to overheat
'She's an outside baby, if she could be outside 24/7, she would. If she isn't going to be able to sweat, she's going to overheat, so I don't think that's is an option for her,' Lelah says.
The second option was Keppra, a common anti-seizure drug, which could cause her already slight underweight daughter to lose her appetite.
Frustrated, Lelah told the hospital she and her husband wanted a little time to do their research and discuss what was best for Jaelah.
'She didn't really seem upset, she just said, "okay, fine, let me know,"' Lelah remembers.
Lelah and Jade decided to try a 'functional wellness center' her sister had recommended. There, a chiropractic neurologist with a PhD suggested Jaelah try cannabidiol, or