Our daughter is a loving and sweet 10 year old girl. She loves soccer, hiking, and spending time with her family. She has also struggled with moderate to severe anxiety since she was 2-years-old.
This past April, she developed different attitudes and behaviors towards food and exercise. We noticed weight loss and talked with her about the importance of providing fuel to her body.
Near the end of April our family experienced significant stress, which may have acted as a catalyst. She began to experience rapid weight loss. We were quite concerned and so was our family doctor. In July, her weight became so low that it began to affect her heart as well as other areas of her body. Her family doctor consulted with a local pediatrician and they felt that our daughter should be hospitalized.
She spent two weeks at the Chinook Regional Hospital. We've been told since then, had it been another month or so, she could have died.
Before being discharged from the hospital, it was recommended that we take our daughter to a special program for eating disorders at the Alberta Children's Hospital in Calgary.
After the first assessment, it was confirmed that she has Anorexia Nervosa. Anorexia has the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. She did not choose to have Anorexia, nor is it caused by any one thing in particular. It can't be treated the same as depression, anxiety or other mental illnesses. It requires specialized training by professionals trained in working with patients with eating disorders.
Unfortunately, there are not any professionals or programs in Lethbridge with this expertise.
The program in Calgary has a high success rate, but requires weekly (sometimes more) appointments that we have to attend for 10 weeks.
Calgary is a two-hour drive and will cost us hundreds of dollars each month in travel costs. As well, my wife won't be able to work for the next few months as our daughter requires constant monitoring and care, resulting in loss of income.
We have been told that if our daughter does not take part in this program, she could die.
This has been hard on our family, especially her twin sister, and the struggle is just beginning. We're missing our daughter on our hikes and other activities.
Please help make these appointments possible and bring our sweet, loving, active daughter back to us.
Any amount will help. If you cannot donate, we understand, but please consider sharing this campaign page.
The McCready Family
- Diana Gillespie
- Marshal Houck
- Shirley Knutson
- Cheryl Loose