Amias was born in end stage renal failure and was facing chronic lung disease. Doctors first realized something was wrong when Yolanda, went in for an ultrasound during her pregnancy. At 22 weeks along, Yolanda was told that her unborn son had no amniotic fluid and that there was a blockage that was severely damaging his bladder and kidneys.
Doctors gave her two options: to terminate her pregnancy or to seek expert care in Cincinnati. Yolanda chose to seek treatment and attended the first of many appointments in October of 2019. Then, in mid-January of 2020, Yolanda was admitted into the hospital in Cincinnati, far from her home in Springfield, Ohio. A month later, her son was struggling and Yolanda was transferred to Cincinnati Children’s. Amias was born on February 6, 2020 and has been fighting for his life since. Yolanda’s outlook on their situation is truly inspiring.
My journey has been sort of difficult, from an emotional standpoint. I’ve only gotten home a couple of times over the past three months. I definitely miss being in the privacy of my own home and sharing that space with my family. But on the other hand, I’m so grateful that I’ve had a clean, comfortable space to stay while being away. Ronald McDonald House has definitely become my home away from home. I don’t feel like a visitor, I feel welcome and at ease there. Being here has definitely made the journey a lot easier and convenient for us.
The changes brought about by the virus had a huge impact on my family. Before the virus, although I wasn’t at home, I was still able to see my daughter Addi regularly. She was able to stay with us here at the House on weekends and sometimes during the week. She and I had never been apart for such an extended period. It was difficult for us both even with seeing each other on the weekends. Now, I don’t get to see her much because I try to distance myself since Amias is high risk.
Addi enjoyed being able to visit her baby brother and help out with his care when possible. Being able to see him regularly made her understand more why mommy couldn’t be home, but it also made her feel involved and closer to him. I miss her a lot and hope that she understands that she isn’t forgotten or an afterthought, but that the virus has caused a lot of necessary changes to keep us all safe and healthy. I can’t be with her physically now, and that’s really hard for us both, but I try to be there for her emotionally as much as possible via Skype, text, or calls.
Staying at the House has been a huge blessing for us for multiple reasons. In the beginning, it was amazing because it allowed us all to be together again, after being separated for three weeks while I was inpatient. The House allowed us to be within walking distance of Amias, who was having an extremely rough time in the beginning. His condition was very much touch and go, not knowing if he would survive most nights, being told that he probably wouldn’t. The House provided a place of refuge for my daughter in a sense as well. You provided her a place away from the tears and sadness of the hospital and gave her a place to let go and enjoy herself for a while.
The House made her feel special when everything had suddenly become all about the baby, so for that I’m extremely grateful. Even now with the restrictions in place, my stay has been extremely accommodating and comfortable. I still haven’t had to worry about where my next meal will come from, where I’ll stay or if I can afford to continue to stay in the city near Amias. All I’ve had to do is focus on Amias and be there for him and get him healthy.
While Amias continues to grow strong, we can be here to comfort his family with your help. Consider supporting families like this one with a gift today.