Mason has been through so much in her four short years of life. Her parents received a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome, and Mason was born six weeks early at little more than two pounds. She was in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Geisinger Janet Weis Children’s Hospital for about a week before going home to meet her siblings. After a week at home, she got sick and had to be hospitalized again, this time for a rare form of meningitis. That was her first stay in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), one of many.
Through the testing that accompanied her meningitis diagnosis, they also found that little Mason had cystic fibrosis, a condition that damages lungs and affects breathing, among other issues. Lucky for Mason and her parents, they were able to be seen by Geisinger pediatric pulmonologist Dr. Jonathan Spahr. Many trips to Geisinger for treatments and hospital stays mean long nights away from home.
The creature comforts provided for Mason and her family, thanks to donations to the Children’s Miracle Network at Geisinger, has made her numerous stays feel more home-like.
For example, donations to the Child Life program allow staff members to come around each day with toys or books and crafts, helping sick kids, like Mason, remember to be just kids.