As the mother of a child with a complex medical condition, I feel that there are some things everyone should know about what it’s like to parent this child, whether he or she is 1 or 21.  In my case, of course, as Nicky is getting older, things are getting more complicated. He’s less mobile, he has more issues, more doctors, etcetera. RDEB is a degenerative condition and the issues we may face are most likely different than what another family may encounter, but we all have similar wishes as far as how we’d like to be treated and what we’d like everyone to know about our journey. These are the most important ones to me: 1. I am not ignoring you. I try to respond to questions or chats promptly, but sometimes it’s simply impossible. When Nicky calls me I run to help him. He knows not to call forRead More →

Parenting a child with a life-threatening condition teaches you that life is precious. Life needs to be lived one day at a time. If I learned to smile despite the yearning to cry, it’s because my new “normal” was to make him smile. I am done being told what to believe, what to be afraid of, who to trust, what to think and who to hate. Why is RDEB medically fragile? Mostly because of the open wounds and the consequences of having non-healing 2nd degree burn-like wounds, which can vary and can be extremely damaging, even lethal. The skin, after all, is the largest organ of the body and it affects everything he does. I realize that even people we know and love struggle to fully comprehend what Nicky’s medical fragility truly means. I regularly receive well-intentioned questions about whether Nicky will ever get better. The short answer is no.Read More →

It occurs to me sometimes that when people in general refer to Nicky or any child with EB as “medically fragile”, they may not truly understand what that means. And the truth is that the definition varies widely not only depending by the form of EB but also from patient to patient. Since my only “specialization” is with Nicky himself, I will attempt to clarify what that means to Nicky being called “medically fragile”, which may not be far from describing the experience of other RDEB families. Let’s start with the acronym itself before I go any further to explain why this condition is so rare: RDEB = Recessive Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa. It is called “Recessive” because it’s inherited recessively, meaning both parents are “carriers” of the condition. And even when this is the case, there is only 1 in 4 chances of a baby being born with RDEB, as the babyRead More →