Meet Benjamin, a happy, loving almost 4 year old.
When Benjamin was 2 weeks old, he was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect which resulted in him going under for a balloon valvuloplasty at just 4 weeks old But he didn’t let that stop him. He flourished and grew and exceeded all expectations. He was above the curve for all areas of his development...
Until he wasn’t. When Benjamin was around 18 months old he started losing his words and withdrew into his own world. At 22 months old, we learned that Benjamin had Autism. We thought, “that’s okay, its just autism.” But it wasn’t. In our search to get Benjamin the support he needed we learnt that although he seemed healthy, his little body was at war with itself. The distended, swollen belly the doctors shrugged off, the picky eating and the PICA ,we figured were just the weird ways of a toddler, the constant ear infections and respiratory infections that were treated but always came back.
Benjamin has a variety of genetic mutations which affect the way his body functions, which if not managed result in various nutrient deficiencies. His gut is wrecked and he appears to suffer from food intolerances that we haven’t managed to pinpoint yet. He also suffers from inflammation issues and possible immune issues.
Our journey down Benjamin’s road to health has seen him gaining speech and communication abilities. Through a variety of therapies, diets and supplements he has been able to learn how to cope in our world without hurting himself or shutting down completely. However due to the sheer cost of these things our journey has come to an abrupt halt. While we are doing our best to meet his needs, we are still miles away from where he needs to be.
We are hoping to raise funds not only to do necessary tests (that are not all available in South Africa) to pinpoint the cause of these medical issues, but to consult with better, more knowledgeable doctors. We would also like these funds to contribute to his therapies and supplements (some of which are not available to us here and have to be shipped from abroad).
Our little big boy cannot express to us his pain and discomfort but we know he feels it. Our mission is to help his body heal and grow so that he can be all he is destined to be. So that he can keep being an awesome energetic big brother to his siblings and a loving cuddly little guy. Without the pain, without the discomfort, without the brainfog. Just Benjamin being Benjamin, despite all he has been through. We appreciate and thank you profusely for any and all support.