CUMMING, Ga. — At only six months old, Julia Rodriguez already has an active following on social media posting daily updates to her facebook page about her journey with Spina Bifida. 

Baby Julia is the daughter of Cumming residents Lauren Mundhenke and Jarrett Rodriguez. She was born on January 29, 2019, and was immediately transported to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta for surgery. As a newborn, Little Julia had to have surgery for a deformed rib and spinal reconstruction. 

Julia was diagnosed with a particularly rare form of Spina Bifida according to Mundhenke.

"Doctors told us that they had never seen a case like hers and that there were only five other similar cases in the world," Mundhenke said. Julia's form of Spina Bifida impacted her shoulder, rather than her lower back.

#JuliaSTRONG
WXIA

Since Julia's birth, the Cumming community has rallied around the baby's family wearing #JuliaSTRONG bracelets to show their support for the family. Most recently, the community donated an SUV to Mundhenke and Rodriguez to ease their traveling back and forth from Scottish Rite Hospital. Mundhenke and Rodriguez say community members have also donated their time to watch their two other children, while they traveled to Julia's appointments. 

Baby Julia has now been home for about month, which her parents say is the longest she has ever been able to stay with them since birth. Mundhenke says her and Julia's dad just want Julia to continue to grow and be able to walk one day, "she has strong legs and movement, so we have hope."

Baby Julia
WXIA

To buy a #JuliaSTRONG bracelet to support Julia and her journey, you can contact her family here

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