Meet 13-Year-Old Micah, Our 9th Recipient

By Traci Ralston, Micah’s mom

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In the fall of 2013, he was 8 years old and had just finished his first season of tackle football; he loved sports of all kinds, loved building with Legos, loved history and science. He was what you might refer to as an “old soul.”

Extreme headaches landed us in the emergency room, with a shocking diagnosis of a brain tumor at 11:00 one night in November. Micah was rushed to emergency surgery the next morning to relieve pressure on his brain, which was the first of many surgeries to deal with the brain tumor and begin our crash course of learning to live with all of the chronic, life threatening medical conditions it would cause, even after removal. After 18 months of clear scans, the tumor recurred, causing Micah to undergo 30 rounds of radiation treatment on his brain.

One of the conditions Micah lives with (Diabetes Insipidus) causes him to be unable to regulate his body’s fluid balance. We have been in and out of the hospital, including staying in the ICU multiple times due to difficulty with this issue, on top of many other things.

Most recently, Micah suffered a massive, debilitating stroke which damaged 75% of the right side of his brain in November of 2018 due to fluid imbalance. This stroke kept us in the hospital and rehab for over three months.  He is currently relearning how to eat, walk, talk and most importantly, he is learning how to live in a dark world due to the fact that the stroke took his eyesight. His fluid balance continues to be difficult to manage, so we find ourselves at the lab or in the ER usually weekly for bloodwork, on top of managing all of his other medical conditions. 

Micah is now 13 years old, and while his life is certainly not easy, he continues to push forward and refuses to give up. We are so very thankful for finally having an iSTAT to be able to keep him more safe, and hopefully lessen one of the more difficult parts of his journey.

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