|Type of Gift||Other|
|Diagnosis||Autism, PANS, OCD, ADHD|
|Gift Requested||Financial assistance towards mold remediation of home|
|Price of Gift||$5,000.00|
Why we requested this gift
We chose to request the gift of helping us pay for mold remediation of our home, because the mold is negatively impacting the kids’ health. Micah (and his sister) have been struggling with flaring autoimmune diseases for quite some time and treatments have been mostly unsuccessful. We’ve been working with doctors running tests to try to help them. Those tests uncovered mold in their bodies. At the doctor’s suggestion, we had a mold inspection of our home, and it revealed serious problems with mold in both our crawl space (where the air handler is located) and garage. The hidden mold may be the culprit as to why treatments for both kids have been minimally effective at best the past 3 years.
We began with an inspection by an independent, certified mold specialist. After receiving his inspection report and the mold samples from the lab, we began seeking estimates for the mold remediation work. Attached are the two we have received already, and we are in the process of talking with a third company. These should give you a reasonable idea of what professionals believe it may cost, with the exception of also adding a dehumidifier to the crawl space (which was strongly recommended by the independent mold inspector in his report).
Our story starts with the biggest blue eyes you’ve ever seen. Everywhere we go, people comment about his eyes. But early on, those eyes also kept others from seeing the pain he (and his family) carries inside.
I (mom) held him briefly right after his birth, before he was quickly whisked away to the NICU in respiratory distress and then treated for difficulty feeding. It was painful to see his tiny body hooked up to multiple tubes and his feet red from so many pricks for blood. While his respiratory issues improved, his difficulty feeding continued and caused a failure-to-thrive diagnosis that would take years to shake. His first year and a half of life were marked with projectile vomiting after every meal, keeping him severely underweight and not even making it on the growth chart for his age until he was 12. A long list of life-threatening, anaphylactic food allergies was uncovered along with an asthma diagnosis.
Developmental delays began emerging well before his first birthday. This was followed by losing the language he had acquired and regressing into his own world where he disengaged from us, cried inconsolably, walked in circles, and hit his head on hard objects.
After many medications and specialists later, exploratory surgery was the only option given to us by his stumped doctors. Instead, we flew out-of-state to seek an autism specialist, which gave us the first victory of curing his projectile vomiting. Yet this led us to many more questions and answers… and more questions than we ever thought possible.
Like many families impacted by autism and related syndromes, we experienced the traditional early speech and language regression, which led to more specialists; speech therapy, physical therapy, occupational therapy, behavioral therapy, IEPs, more discoveries… and the list goes on.
And now at age 13, we are still on this journey. What a victory that our brilliant and magnanimous child is now so verbal it’s hard to fathom there was a time that I begged God daily to just hear him say the word “mom” one time.
At present, his medical issues remain significant. He has autism (with all the challenges it brings), asthma, a long list of anaphylactic food allergies, but he also suffers from PANS and OCD rules that govern his life. Some rules are functional; many are not. Sometimes they create such distress for him that he becomes aggressive and destructive. But deep down inside, our son has a heart of gold that more often than not draws everyone to him. His struggle for years in traditional school settings and their inability to meet his needs led us to start homeschooling him two years ago. He is now thriving and growing in his knowledge and practical skills as a result.
If you met him, he would tell you he’s a salesman. He would try to sell you coffee, Apple products, and all kinds of items from his “flea market.” And he would likely be successful through his persistence, intelligence, and those big blue eyes. Yet, just as when he was young, his beautiful blue eyes still cloak the significant and ongoing medical issues that daily impact his life.