Christina, an amazing single mother who’ll do absolutely anything for her 4 yr old son, Ryan Marc Hernandez. A child whose laughter brightens up any room. She decided to make a few sacrifices to provide Ryan with a better life. She gave up her home, moved back in with a relative temporarily to save money, worked part time and returned to school full time to further her education to become a Physician Assistant. This decision allowed her to set up a schedule to be in school while her son began early pre-k in a private school. She worked several over night shifts just to get Ryan to school, go to school herself, pick him up and then get to her studies later that evening. She completed her first year of college.
During the summer of July 2017, she began noticing some changes in Ryan’s physical behavior. This very active, playful, big ball of energy began to complain of leg pains. She noticed bruising on his legs that seemed to last a lot longer than they should. She also noticed how much less he would run around or how often he would trip while walking. Her concerns began to overwhelm her so she brought him to his Pediatrician who suggested that bruises below the knees are very common in active little boys and didn’t seem too concerned. Mom insisted that tests should still be done. Later that night, she was called to return to the hospital for Ryan to be admitted because his blood counts were extremely low. Soon after she would get the results that would change their lives dramatically.
Ryan was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia which is a cancer of the blood and bone marrow in which the bone marrow makes too many immature lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell). The term “acute” means that the leukemia can progress quickly, and if not treated, can be fatal. Christina immediately took an unpaid leave from her part time job, withdrew from school to dedicate all her time to caring for her son and studying the illness. Luckily, Ryan’s cancer was caught early enough before any severe symptoms surfaced and treatment began immediately. As of now, Ryan is currently in remission. However, his treatment is nowhere near over. Ryan’s treatment consists of 2-3 years of both intravenous and intrathecal chemotherapy. Some of his treatment will require inpatient admissions for management of life threatening side effects. Ryan is not attending school as of right now since she wants to make sure he has the proper supervision, care and comfort. His immune system gets weak from the chemotherapy as well as the medications. It’s been 6 months and Ryan has endured over 14 spinal taps/lumbar punctures, 32 medical appointments and has been hospitalized 3 times.
Christina is not someone who asks for help which is why I’m asking for all of you to help someone who not only needs it but deserves it. She is now only working two days a week to support her son and is spending more money than she can afford on cabs weekly going to and from the hospital. Her job recently cut off her medical coverage because she doesn't work enough hours and is in the process of applying for emergency medicaid. Ryan must continue his weekly appointments at the hospital in order to kick cancer's butt! She’s the most selfless person I know who goes over and beyond for not only her son but for all those she loves. Lets help her raise enough money to help out with her expenses to living more comfortably and stress-free with her little boy in order to give him all the help that he needs.
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