He belongs to a friend of mine, and although he is exceptionally adorable, it is not the only unique thing about him.
After his first week of life it was evident that something was wrong. He was bleeding excessively from shots, his circumcision, and his umbilical stump. In the first months of his life he developed hematomas, spontaneous bleeds, and deep spontaneous bruising.
When he was just 5 months old, he was diagnosed with Hypofibrinogenemia, which is a Factor I deficiency. It’s very similar to Hemophilia, but more rare. It means that he has extremely thin blood (as thin as is medically possible to detect) and he is unable to clot. This condition can cause deadly internal bleeds, joint disfiguration, nerve damage, and crippling arthritis.
Can you imagine having to constantly worry about all of that on top of the normal motherly things?
Thankfully, Forrest has been able to have fantastic medical care and has a great support group.
Josie Kelly (Forrest’s mother) has created a website called HemoHelper.com. The mission of HemoHelper is to provide information, support, and products to those affected by bleeding disorders.
Their main focus is to be an approachable source of support, tips, and hemo-friendly products for families and individuals affected by bleeding disorders. They hope to provide positive change and bring aid to the hemophilia community in developing countries. They have already completed several trips to different countries.
I have been touched by Forrest’s story and have chosen to raise money through “A Chick w/ Sticks” to contribute to Josie’s new site and aid her as she tries to better the world for those affected by bleeding disorders.
So, please join me here on my ACWS blog as I document my progress and experiences.
Thank you to everyone who has supported me in my efforts so far!
For more information on bleeding disorders:
National Hemophilia Foundation