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jacob home away from home

Home Away from Home: One Weekend a Month

June 13th, 2018

Jacob is a smart, kind 9-year-old boy. Like many kids his age, he loves Star Wars and legos. Unlike most kids, Jacob receives a monthly injection of an experimental drug to manage immune complications. This treatment has given Jacob a new quality of life, but it also means he calls the Ronald McDonald House home one weekend each month.

Jacob and his mom Jennifer were staying at the Ronald McDonald House the weekend of the groundbreaking ceremony for the expansion of the House. “Actually, it was really good timing because that same week the doctors told us that it would be another three years of every fourth week injections. The new House gives him something to look forward to,” said Jacob’s mom, Jennifer.

Jacob spent the first two years of his life at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, off and on, where he had multiple stomach surgeries. During that time, Jacob’s family spent many nights at the Ronald McDonald House in Milwaukee. Jacob then developed some immune complications. He started developing allergies to everything he came in contact with. He was diagnosed with severe eosinophilic esophagitis and severe eosinophilic asthma. He would have breathing complications many nights with hives. His family spent many hours each day and night treating skin sores, protecting his lungs with treatments, trying their best to get through the day and provide the best environment for Jacob to live in.

The family then reached out to a specialist at the American Family Children’s Hospital in Madison who gratefully took Jacob under their wing. His doctors thought Jacob would benefit from an experimental drug, which ended up giving Jacob a new quality of life.