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The election has brought out a lot of negativity on social media (much of it from Turtleboy), so it’s time to share a little ray of sunshine with the community. Because at the end of the day, it’s just politics. In four years we’ll do it all again. But a beautiful baby is something we can all get behind. This is Gabriella Quinn from Sterling, and she is a gift from up above:
Gabby has Biliary Atresia, a liver disease that develops shortly after birth (she was born in January, slightly prematurely at only four pounds). Gabbie’s is now advanced and she’s in desperate need of a liver transplant.
This is a disease that can be fatal if she does not get the liver transplant. Luckily for the family CBS picked up their story. Gabbie needs O positive or O negative blood, which luckily account for 45 percent of Americans. Her first surgery was in March at just 8 weeks old. However, it failed. Luckily after the story was posted on several Facebook Mommy groups a Worcester woman named Mary Beth Sbrogna saw it and decided to do something:
Amazing. Just amazing. Look, Turtleboy is a HUGE softy. Especially when it comes to little baby girls like this. They are perfect. Mary Beth would know – she is a mother of two little girls:
She goes for her first operation in early December. Her final appointment is Friday and they’ll have a date for her the following week. It’s a 4-5 hour surgery in which a portion of her liver (about 25%) will be removed and then taken by helicopter over to the children’s hospital where it will be transplanted into little Gabbie.
Mary Beth just so happened to know Gabbie’s mother Meghan from back in the day, and when she came across the story about Gabbie she was inspired to help. She knew she had to do something because of the love she feels for her own daughters. I hate to pull the “as a parent” card, but when you see something like this you can’t help but think about your own kids. This is what motivated Mary Beth to volunteer for such a selfless act.
Little Gabbie needs the help too. Her parents got a call at the end of September that they had a liver for her, and obviously they were very excited. However, it turned out to be a big letdown when it was determined that the liver was too big. As you can imagine, they are ecstatic that Mary Beth has willingly agreed to go under the knife in order to save the life of their beautiful daughter.
We spoke with Mary Beth and asked her what inspired her to do this:
“What inspired me to do this was just reading that article and putting myself in her mom’s shoes. I have two little girls and if my only hope for one of them surviving was the empathy and actions of a total stranger I would hope someone would do the same. I can’t just expect good from this world and expect people to step up when I’m in need if I never put it out into the world.
So this will be a temporary cure. It’s technically a chronic liver disease so she will have to fight her entire life. That’s the thing, people think I’m brave- I’m 30 years old and once this surgery and recovery is over my liver will regenerate itself and I will go back to my normal life. She’s only 10 months old and she’s tougher than I could ever be on my best day. Her mom too. They will have to deal with this forever and constantly worry about rejection as well.”
Gotta be honest, I had absolutely no idea that livers could regenerate. Science is cool.
As you can imagine, this has been quite taxing on Gabbie’s parents. They have no idea how long recovery will take. Right now they are taking turns staying home from work because they can’t send her to daycare due to risk of infection of other children. If you would like to help this family get through this trying ordeal, here is the GoFundMe. I’d estimate that 5-10% of GoFundMe’s are actual serving the purposes for why GoFundMe was created. This is one of those noble causes. Anything you can give is graciously appreciated.
They’re also putting New Englander’s hatred of the snow to a good cause. Mary Beth is rafflying off free snow removal service for the year. For every $5 donated, one entry will be placed in the donor’s name. This goes for all residential properties in Worcester and surrounding towns. Here’s a link for that.
So please, if you’re angry or frustrated right now, try to remember that there are people out there like Gabbie who are facing things that really put the rest of our daily whining and fighting in context. Gabbie doesn’t care who the President is. She just wants to love her Mommy and her Daddy, and they want to love her right back. Mary Beth doesn’t wanna call herself a hero, which is fine. But we will. The world could use more people like this.
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