God will help her when morning dawns.
The nations rage, the kingdoms totter;
He utters His voice, the earth melts.
The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
~ Psalm 46:5-7
(one of Chloe's favorite bible passages)
Our sweet daughter Chloe (age 9) is on an incredible journey to straighten the curve in her back - will you join us?
In November of 2017, Chloe was diagnosed in our hometown of Spokane, Washington with moderate to severe scoliosis. We were told surgery was imminent around age 13 (her spine would be fused and all further growth would be stopped) so our only option was to put her in a brace until that age and hope it would not get worse. This is a necessary procedure in very severe cases and we are very thankful for great surgeons in our city should we find ourselves at the point. We, however, wanted to avoid surgery if at all possible.
Chloe's initial x-ray from Feb 2018
In March 2018, we found a non-invasive scoliosis doctor in Seattle and received some treatment from him but found out in late July that his practice was not continuing any longer. Back to square one! We then searched for another clinic doing similar non-invasive treatment and found the Scoliosis Care Centers in San Jose, California. After a long, honest, sobering and incredibly informative conversation with Dr. Matt Janzen, we knew we had to act fast. There was 100% guarantee that, if left alone, her curve would get worse. We were reminded that her scoliosis could worsen at any time (particularly since she is quite young with many growth spurts still to come) and the greater the curve, the harder it would be to reverse it or do surgery.
The clinic in San Jose requires an initial 3 week treatment and at the time we talked to them, we had exactly 3 weeks left in our summer break before the start of school. So, knowing that the curve could worsen at any time (or maybe already had) and desiring to not take Chloe and our other girls out of school for an extended period of time, we knew we had to look long and hard at making the initial trip to San Jose. We felt a little crazy, a lot apprehensive and a bit like the frontier families heading out west to the unknown - yet at the same time seeking God's direction through prayer to do the right thing for Chloe.
Two days later, we had the family packed up and we were on the road to San Jose, CA! During our 16 hour drive, we heard that a friend of Sarah's sister-in-law called some friends in San Jose on our behalf. Turns out this couple was leaving for a month - and they wanted us to use their home while they're away. And on top of that, their home is less than 10 miles from the clinic. Prayers were already being answered!
Chloe on the neuro-elongation ("nerve stretching") table
It's now nearly the end of the first week of treatment - and more than anything, it has been incredibly sobering while still confirming that we are in the right place. Chloe's curve had indeed worsened by 10 degrees (bringing her to a whopping 60 degrees) and to complicate matters, she has one leg that's quite a bit longer than the other (which has never been diagnosed by any doctor up to this point). This is probably causing an uneven pelvis and most likely exasperating the scoliosis. Chloe has been AMAZING but there have also been a lot of tears - she is being asked to do incredibly hard work to both exercise her spine while also preparing her body for a full time brace which she will receive at the culmination of the 3 week treatment (to be worn 23 hours a day). The doctors have proven to be very innovative, knowledgeable, thorough and caring - so we are hopeful that they can help our brave Chloe!
Chloe reclined in her custom-built Scoliosis Flexibility Trainer
We know that we can't do this journey on our own. With our great God leading the way, we know He can heal Chloe - but along with straightening her back, our prayer is that He will also strengthen her faith in Him.
But we also need YOU to walk beside us on this journey! We would covet your prayers in the following ways:
* For Chloe: strength, joy and fortitude to do the hard and painful exercises required
* For her doctors: may they use their knowledge and creativity to figure out the best possible way to help Chloe
* For her sisters (Norah and Phoebe): patience and understanding as we focus much of our energy on their big sister
* For mom and dad: may we stay steady, encouraging and strong - and my God give us wisdom and peace throughout this process (which could be many years)
There is also a significant financial cost to this journey - and we need help! This treatment path we have chosen is not covered by any insurance and is very expensive. We are exploring ways to cover the costs (refinancing our home, medical hardship withdrawal from our retirement, etc) but we also need additional money to cover the balance.
* Three weeks of treatment here in San Jose, CA: $15,000
* Scoliosis Day Brace (designed and built specifically for Chloe): $6,500
* Scoliosis Night Brace (designed and built specifically for Chloe - more restrictive than her day brace and therefore to be worn only at night): $4,000
* Scoliosis Flexibility Trainer (designed and built specifically for Chloe): $7,000
* Neuro-elongation table: $4,500
We will also need to come back to San Jose every three months for one week ($5,000 per week) and Chloe will need new braces as she grows (approximately $10,000 per year). For these trips, we will also have plane fares, lodging and rental car costs. All told, that's an additional $30,000 per year for the next 5-7 years.
We chose a goal of $65,000 because this is essentially the cost of Chloe's first 12 months of treatment (including equipment).
We realize these financial numbers are VERY high - but we also strongly believe that this clinic in San Jose is the ONLY place in the world that can help our Chloe and keep her out of surgery. We ask that you prayerfully consider partnering with Chloe on the incredible journey that lies ahead for her!
If you have any questions or would like additional details or to discuss her treatment with us, please let us know. You can also read more about the treatment Chloe is receiving at http://scoliosiscarecenters.com.
With our hearts full of love and thankfulness -
Brian & Sarah Jensen
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