My name is Dustin and I am almost 2 years old. I was born with a condition called Arthrogryposis and that means I had severely clubbed feet at birth and I have contractures in the tendons and ligaments in my ankles and wrists. My family nicknamed me the little frog for obvious reasons.
Over the past two years I have had to have casts on my legs from 2 weeks old til now. All in all I have had to be recasted 13 different times. I do ok when they put the new casts on but it's REALLY SCARY when they use the saw to cut the old ones off. When the doctor thought my feet looked good I got my special boots and the dreaded bar that my boots locked into for about 20 hours a day.
Can you imagine how uncomfortable it is to sleep like this?
I hve already had one surgery that was done here in Michigan at U of M Children's Hospital and the doctor did the best he could.
This has been really hard on Mommy and Daddy and my Big sister Emma.
My whole family tries so hard to make things as normal as possible for me.
Because off all of this stuff though I miss out on a lot of things the other kids get to do. I love the water but only have had very few chances to swim and splash in the tub I want to walk like my cousins and friends at daycare but my casts can't get wet and my boots make it too hard.
I get a little sad when everyone else is walking and I have to be carried. I am very smart and try to be as independant as I can but you can see how these things get in my way!
During all of it I have heard people tell my mommy and daddy how blessed they are that I have such a good nature because I laugh and smile all of the time even with everything I have been through. That's because I could hear the big people talking about the day all of my treatments would be over and I would be just like all the other kids. Able to jump, run and swim whenever I want and that made me happy.
Now unfortunately after countless castings and that surgery that I don't really remember (except that when I woke up I felt really funny and I got popsicles) I am supposed to have one last surgery but something called an "insurance company" says they won't pay for me to get better because my doctor, Dr. Dobbs at Children's Hospital in St. Louis, MO is out of state. Seems really weird because they paid for my casts that I have been to St. Louis for over the last 3 weeks.
I have my new casts but can only wear them for another 3 weeks and then I have to have my surgery or everything I have been through in the last 2 years will be for nothing so, could you PLEASE help me so I can run and swim with the other kids? I would be forever thankful if you could find it in your heart to do so.
- Dennis Sciarratta
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