On December 2, 2019 our lives forever changed. Isabella had an elective "simple" surgery scheduled to remove a cyst outside of her liver. We were nervous as parents but hopeful for a quick recovery from the laparoscopic procedure. Unfortunately, there were substantial life changing complications, sepsis and an emergency surgery resulting in recurrent infections. Our warrior princess began navigating her challenging health journey that ultimately resulted in being listed for a liver transplant the day after her fifth birthday. Never discouraged, always smiling and laughing our dear Isabella taught us what strength was and in the darkest moments would come up with the brightest and wisest sayings to keep us steadfast. We reached a new low point when we learned that neither parent nor any of our siblings were a suitable match. We set out on an unexpected journey to publicly share our baby girl's story and find her a donor. In one of a number of miracles we found a match who offered to save our little lady's life with the ultimate sacrifice. However it still took 46 long and precarious days until the surgery could be completed. So many families wait even longer and that in itself felt like an eternity. The surgery day, "New Livermas" was nothing short of a miracle. Every single day with Isabella is a blessing and she amazes us with her strength and positivity. We know the path ahead is not straightforward but feel so deeply fortunate we get to forge it together.
Izzy received the gift of life on October 21st, 2021. An incredibly generous friend donated part of her liver to save Izzy. We continue to be heartened by your support of Izzy, our family and our efforts to give back to SickKids which has been a place of hope and healing for us. You were so generous in supporting our first year of fundraising in support of SickKids. We are grateful and inspired by the outpouring of support for Izzy and children like her.
This has led us to commit to establishing the Team Izzy Liver Transplant Program with a goal to raise $5 million to fully fund the program. The Team Izzy Liver Transplant program will enable our family and the Team Izzy community to accelerate progress in the field of paediatric transplantation and care continuum that follows a transplant. Together, we will inspire leaders in the field to pursue big ideas that can change the future for children like Izzy.
Thank you for your generosity and support!