Which must also explain Lila's immediate shift from Matt to Cass. One day she is desperate for Matt's love, and alienating him from Sophia. The next day she is head over heals for Cass and Matt is an a-hole trying to get custody.
That was when Richard Culliton left and Leah Laiman came in. Just from watching the relatively small amount of episodes on Youtube, you could tell there was a shift between early 1998 to mid to late 98.
When Laiman came in, she was told to write something "larger than life" and what she came up with was Lumina.