Thousands of Central Florida kids are diagnosed each year with life-threatening illnesses, and many will spend weeks or months in the hospital, sometimes returning up to 100 times or more for their treatment.
Three-year-old Ezekiel came to AdventHealth for Children with severe jaundice and an unexpected liver failure diagnosis. After a few days, his liver function began to improve, and he was discharged shortly before his third birthday. Ezekiel’s mom Angie and her husband, Alex, couldn’t believe it when they were told their son only had 40% liver function. Time seemed to stand still as the couple had to make quick decisions regarding their son’s health. Meanwhile, Angie decided to put work on hold to take care of her son.
“In that situation, when your child is sick, you would do anything to make them better. Your priorities change and no matter what you have to do, you just want your child to get better.”
Ezekiel received a health evaluation and was placed at the top of the transplant list. Doctors were telling Angie she had a few days to decide if a liver transplant was the right course of action for her three-year-old. The next day, doctors said they had a match. Everything was happening so fast; Angie and Alex began working with a transplant coordinator who made them feel comfortable and answered all their questions. The couple prayed about it, talked to their doctor and ultimately made the decision to go ahead with the transplant surgery.
Ezekiel became the third pediatric transplant patient at AdventHealth. Post-transplant Angie could see a huge difference in her son, he wasn’t yellow anymore! Ezekiel recently celebrated his one-year anniversary, post-transplant. He enjoys playing with race cars and is a happy, energetic little boy.
Angie and Alex are overwhelmed and grateful for the support they received during this emotional journey from friends, family and even strangers in the community.
We realize that when a child is ill, our community members want to help in any way they can. But it’s not always easy to know how. This holiday season, our Day of Giving on December 16 provides the answer. Every dollar donated helps local families whose kids are in the hospital by covering household bills for things like rent, utilities and transportation. This is the kind of help that parents truly need when they can’t go to work because a child is in the hospital. It’s the kind of help that keeps them going, so they can be strong for their loved one.
Today, you can help families make ends meet while their child is receiving care at AdventHealth for Children. Every dollar you donate helps local families like Angie, Alex and Ezekiel with basic needs while their child is in the hospital.
Learn more about the AdventHealth for Children Day of Giving on December 16 or donate today to make a difference this holiday season.