A Red Deer boy who was not expected to see his second birthday has exceeded medical expectations and is now a curious three-year-old.
But he’s frustrated when his manual wheelchair can’t take him where he wants to go.
His family is fundraising to get little Mason Seward an off-road standing wheelchair that will allow the tyke with a genetic neuromuscular disorder more freedom of movement.
So far, the community has contributed $7,900 toward the wheelchair’s $32,000 cost.
“He cannot wait to plow the driveway this year,” say his parents, Madison and Blake Seward.
Their son was diagnosed at three months old with Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type 1, a degenerative disorder that affects nerve cells that control his voluntary muscles.
“We were broken. Looking into the eyes of our baby and watching him deteriorate day by day was the hardest thing we have ever done,” said the Sewards.
Mason’s doctors told his parents he would likely not make it past age two, but the boy has been a part of a trial to receive a therapy treatment. The medication Zolgensma is now FDA approved, and the Sewards believe it has extended Mason’s life.
“We hope to give him the world. He has the biggest heart and has taught us about appreciation for life.”
While Mason loves the outdoors, he can’t get around because of muscle weakness.
He doesn’t have the upper body strength to manoeuvre a manual wheelchair off the pavement, “and the places he wants to go are not accessible,” say his parents, who want to give their son the most out of life.
A track chair would allow him to move over all types of terrain.
“It would allow him to experience all the joys of being a kid — fishing, camping, hiking, going to the beach, or playing at the park. His lack of mobility is a constant frustration.”
For more information about Mason’s fundraiser, visit GoFundMe.