Many of you know the long, difficult, and unexpected journey that Patrick and Courtney O'Malley have faced over the last decade due to Patrick's recurring illness. For those of you who don't know their story, please take a moment to read a bit about their journey below. As friends of theirs, we desire to come around them and support them on this journey. Part of the difficulty they face is the pile of medical bills mounting higher each day, not to mention all of the other added expenses they've had including the extra gas needed to drive back and forth 45 min each way to the hospital so frequently. We have created this site to help raise money towards their medical costs and we would like to extend the opportunity to you to join with us in coming alongside the O'Malley family in this very tangible way. We know that the O'Malley's would not want anyone to feel in any way pressured to give any money, so please only give if you feel moved to do so. No amount is too small and please know that Courtney and Patrick are incredibly grateful for all of the ways people have supported them so far and they continue to be amazed that people want to come around them and support them financially as well. So, in advance, we thank you!!!
Please feel free to forward this link to anyone who you think might also be inclined to donate to this fund.
I can't believe that this is our story, but here it is, the story of Patrick and Courtney O'Malley. A little over a year after getting married, in 2001 Patrick started to notice some concerning symptoms and went to see his doctor. At first the doctor assumed that everything was fine and sent him home, because he was only 24 and statistically not many 24 year olds have serious neurological diseases. A number of months later when things were getting worse, a MRI was ordered. That was when our lives changed; he had a huge lesion in his brain. We were young, 23 and 24 and terrified. The next month we both lived at the hospital sharing a hospital bed and his life was full of blood work, spinal taps, seeing every type of doctor on the planet, and finally a brain biopsy. We were told he had inflamed brain tissue but that was all they knew. At first we were thankful that he didn't have anything on list of horrible diseases they were mentioning, but then when no diagnosis was able to be made we realized we would not know how to treat it or what his prognosis would be. It was living in a constant state of unknowns hoping that God would spare his life. We began a three year journey of trying different types of treatments watching them fail and trying others hoping one of them would work. He almost died from a staph infection. Eventually he did 6 rounds of chemo with two other treatments and the disease went into remission. We were relieved and ecstatic when the doctor said after 2 years of clear scans that we didn't need to come back unless we saw signs of the disease returning. For the first time in 5 years we felt the freedom to plan a future and decided to start a family. We welcomed our first little girl in 2008. However, her birth was clouded with illness as she had to be medevac'd to another hospital only hours after being born. We were devastated that illness had struck our tiny baby girl. We changed our lives to adjust to our new goal given to us from the doctors; to make sure she did not get sick for the first 2 years of life therefore allowing her lungs to heal. We were isolated, but so thankful the Lord spared her life. In 2010 we got pregnant with our second little girl and were excited and nervous about adding on to our family. That fall we began to notice something was not quite right with Patrick and nervously went in for a MRI. We got devastating news that he had lesions all over his brain. I, Courtney, was terrified. He went into the hospital where again they did exhaustive blood work, multiple spinal taps and eventually a brain biopsy when the previous all came back normal. This time we ended up with a diagnosis of B cell central nervous system (CNS) lymphoma and a prognosis of living 10 years at most. As CNS lymphoma is so rare we sought out 2nd opinions from two other top hospitals that came back with two completely different diagnoses. We were at a standstill again not knowing how to treat this newest disease. The scary thing about not knowing exactly what you have is that you have no idea if what you try to treat it with will work or make it worse. I wondered if our baby would ever meet her Daddy and if, our then 2 year old would even remember him. After Patrick recovered from brain surgery he began 9 rounds of high dose chemotherapy. He stayed in the hospital for 4 days and was home for 10, then back again. We had to wait almost 4 months to find out that the chemo was working. In the midst of all of this I went into labor 2 hours after we had just left the hospital following one of his rounds of chemo. I labored with a friend and a doula while Patrick slept on the couch. You know he must have been tired to have slept through 14 hours of an unmedicated birth! He received chemo from December 2010 until June of 2011 and was in remission for a year and 3 months. During that break we worked on rebuilding our family and healing the pain from almost losing Patrick yet again. This past September, in a routine MRI, they found that lesions were returning. He immediately began a slightly different course of inpatient chemotherapy. This time around he has had to endure 6 rounds of chemo, tons of shots to keep his white cell count from tanking and a weeklong unexpected hospital stay because his white cell count was at 0. This has been physically, emotionally, spiritually and financially draining on all of us. Our 4 year old, myself (Courtney) and Patrick have all been in or are beginning counseling to work on coping and healing from these experiences. Our medical bills will be in excess of $10,000. In addition to the entire above story we just found out that Patrick's job will be ending in March and we will be losing our only income and our health insurance. We have seen God carry all of us through the past 11 years. He has provided us with an amazing support system of family, friends, and total strangers. He has spared Patrick's life on multiple occasions when he came fairly close to dying. He has provided us with amazing children and faith that although tested has not been completely shaken. We know that he will provide for us in the upcoming months and years. I don't believe this will be the end of our story, and we don't know what plans God has for us but we know he will never leave us nor forsake us. We put our faith and trust in the only sure foundation this world has to offer.
DonationsSee top donations
- Alexandra Castulovich
- kathy cahill
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
In the rare case something isn’t right, we will work with you to determine if misuse occurred. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more