Today began like any other Friday - catching up on email, working on wishes, and engaging with our volunteers. Then we received a notification on Facebook. It was from Wish mom Jessica who wanted to share the story of her son Jayden who had received a wish from our chapter 6 years ago. In her words:
My son Jayden was born with sickle cell disease (SCD). For 8 years he suffered tremendously with this disease. For a long time my husband and I prayed for a miracle to cure our child, he had the worse case of sickle cell and we were told by his doctors early on that he wouldn't survive without a bone marrow transplant. God gave us a miracle in the form of another blessing, Justin! Our second child. He was born healthy, no SCD, and immediately Jayden's doctor asked if we can test him to see if he was a match. A year later, (we had to wait until he was a year old) we found out he was a PERFECT MATCH! Jayden was able to get his Lil brother's marrow and cure this disease.
On March 24th one day after Justin's second birthday, Justin donated his marrow and Jayden had his transplant at Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital - Columbia University Medical Center. Unfortunately, the SCD tried one last time to rear its ugly head and an hour after his transplant Jayden had a massive stroke that almost took his life. Thank God he was attended to right away and after 2 weeks in ICU Jayden survived the stroke and he was on his way to recovery from the transplant as well.
Before all of this, we were referred to Make-A-Wish Hudson Valley and soon after Jayden's wish was to meet John Cena! Jayden was (and still is) a HUGE John Cena fan!
We met him in Albany NY and we got to see at a live WWE show! It was truly one of the best experiences of our lives! Justin was too little to remember but he enjoyed it as well! Jayden was nervous before going to the hospital for his transplant, he was only 8 years old; but going to meet his all-time favorite wrestler made him forget what was about to happen to him. We are so grateful and forever grateful for Make-A-Wish!
Today, Jayden is 14-years-old, fully recovered from both the stroke and the transplant, he is sickle cell free and is doing amazingly well! Our Miracle baby Justin is 8 and he is doing well too! Big, smart, and funny! Thank you again for all that you do!
We are honored and privileged to have been able to impact Jayden and his family. Thank you for sharing your story and for continuing to inspire us!
As one of 2,500+ wishes we've granted during our 31 years serving the community, we are grateful to our Volunteers (read more about National Volunteer Week), Donors, and Supporters that assist us in granting these life-affirming experiences.