This post is sponsored by Aflac. I was compensated for writing it, but all opinions are 100% mine.
I’m excited to introduce y’all to the Wolfe family: Stephanie, Mathew, and their daughter, Addison. (Everyone calls her Addie!) I met Stephanie pre babies through a local blogger meet up back in 2011. Stephanie has a lifestyle blog called The Vintage Modern Wife where she talks about family, faith, and food. We have gotten to know each other via social media over the years and get excited when we get to hang out at blog events together in Austin. And then we got pregnant with our first babies at the same time! Maxwell was born in March and Addie was born in August of 2014!
I teamed up with Aflac Holiday Helpers to share the Wolfe’s story and bring them some extra special holiday cheer. Supplemental insurance from Aflac pays cash when policyholders are sick or hurt so they can focus on recovery, not financial stress. Aflac knows that the holiday season can be a particularly challenging time for people without supplemental insurance who may be dealing with the aftermath of a serious health event. With the help of Aflac, Addie got a special chair, a generator, physical therapy toys, lots of baby necessities, and even a zoo membership. Stephanie told me things like a membership to her local zoo means so much because it proves how far Addie has come. Addie is well enough to go on road trips to fun places, like a normal toddler.
Like most couples expecting their first baby, Stephanie and Mathew were beyond excited. The 20 week ultra sound is a much anticipated event in the world of pregnancy, and Mathew and Stephanie were elated to find out they would have a daughter. But, they were also given some very scary news. They were told their sweet baby has a Sacrococcygeal Teratoma (SCT). After more tests, it was discovered that Addie also has a translocation of chromosomes 1 and 5. Her translocation is imbalanced and chromosome 1 has a duplication and chromosome 5 has a deletion. Doctors do not know of anyone else in the world that has this exact chromosomal abnormality, so there is not a name for this condition. Because no one else has this condition, no one knows exactly what to expect. You can read a ton more about Addie’s condition on Stephanie’s blog here. Six surgeries and 10 months in NICU, Stephanie and Mathew were finally able to bring Addie home!
I was thrilled when Aflac asked me to be a part of their Holiday Helpers program for the 2016 holiday season. I was given the task of choosing a family in my community that was in need because of a health related issue. Ironically, Stephanie was not the first person that came to mind. Stephanie never asks for help and has the most positive outlook on life. She throws amazing birthday parties for Addie, ensures that Addie gets to visit Santa, and even crafts up the cutest family Halloween costumes. Mathew and Stephanie are rock star parents and do whatever it takes to give Addie a normal childhood. Feeling thankful that I did not know anyone in an immediate health need, I reached out to Stephanie to ask if Addie needed anything special.
Stephanie responded, “We’ve been looking at a chair for Addie to use for feeding. Her therapist wants her to start eating in a chair (I currently hold her) and although she has a high chair, it doesn’t give her the head support she needs. I’ve been looking into a specific one but it’s more than I can pay right now. It’s like $400.”
Done and done. We will get you that chair, sweet Addie!
I didn’t tell Stephanie right away that we actually had a grant for $2,500! We were going to need to buy a few more things than just this chair! This portable, lightweight chair can attach to any regular chair and gives Addie enough head support to sit anywhere. We got Addie the pink and purple one, of course! I think she likes her new chair!
The other big item Stephanie wanted to purchase for Addie was a generator. They live in Waco, TX where tornadoes are not a rare event. When the power goes out, it is incredibly scary for everyone in the Wolfe household. Without electricity, Addie can’t breathe. I’m happy to say, we got her a generator, and I got the best thank you ever. Addie is so smiley and snuggly!
We also gave Addie’s physical therapy toys a new home in their living room with this cute storage bench. Here’s the before:
and here’s the after:
Addie’s bathroom got a kid friendly makeover with a new shower curtain, rugs, towels, and hand towels. The coral, green, and turquoise is such a happy color combo!
Addie got fully stocked on diapers and wipes for the next year, and I was super excited to pick Addie out a playscape that she could utilize in her backyard when the weather is nice. Fingers crossed Stephanie shares some pictures of Addie in that swing on social media!
We also got Addie some new puppets to read with before bed and an adorable kid friendly oil diffuser for her bedroom. I had a blast hanging out with Stephanie and shopped ’til we drop for Addie! We even snuck in a little girls-only dinner and explored downtown Waco!
Addie gets stronger and stronger everyday and will have her her G-tube removed in February. This just means that Addie no longer needs to be fed through a tube. She has been weaned from her feeding tube for many months and eats and drinks through her mouth. Go Addie! Addie is working on sitting up on her own, holding her head up, and grasping small objects. We are hopeful that she will also be weaned from her vent in the next few years.
Thank you, Aflac, for allowing me to bring the Wolfe family some unexpected generosity during this holiday season. I am so thankful to be a small part of helping Addie grow into a strong, beautiful young lady, and I will forever be one of her many cheerleaders! Aflac is there in your time of need – big or small. To learn more visit Aflac’s website.