Hometown Hero…

carter post transplant

…And he’s only two years old.  My aunt was telling me last week about her friend/neighbor’s grandson Carter, who was diagnosed in April with hepatoblastoma (an extremely rare form of pediatric liver cancer that affects about 100 kids per year).  Carter’s mom grew up in my hometown, so I feel a special connection with this family.  Carter’s mom and dad have been keeping a daily blog about their journey, which my aunt forwarded to me and I sat transfixed for four hours, reading every single entry in one sitting.

This family amazes me – not only is their youngest facing a serious disease with the spirit that only a toddler can, but Mom is also pregnant and due in September!  Their story is the reason I want to go into pediatric nursing – because it’s family nursing.  Reading about  how they are treated by a variety of doctors, nurses, CNAs and so many other health care workers, has sometimes made me proud of my profession and sometimes made me very frustrated.  I can only hope that someday I am one of those nurses that they hold up as a positive example.

Needless to say, this family is also facing an uphill financial battle.  The location of the tumors necessitated a liver transplant last week.  Carter is recovering very well, but cancer treatment ain’t cheap, nor is a major transplant (nor the anti-rejection meds and follow-up care that Carter will need for the rest of his life).  The family’s friends have set up a “Carter’s Fight Fund” to help defray some of the costs.  If you’d be interested in donating even a few dollars in support of Carter and his family, download the contribution form here and read more.

I encourage you also to read the family’s blog.  You will be inspired.

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