I was born a happy healthy baby boy. One day things changed when I was 2 and one half years old, I woke up with puffy eyes. At first, my parents thought maybe I had an allergy, but in a couple of days things got worse. My stomach and legs got swollen, and my parents knew something was definitely wrong.

My dad took me to the hospital, and the doctors ran lots of tests. After quite some time, the doctors said that I had minimal change nephrotic syndrome. I stayed in the hospital for one week. I was very sick. The medications took longer than it normally takes to begin to turn my illness around. It was a scary time for my parents. I was very sick.

After returning home my well being didn’t last for long,

I had several relapses in the next 5 months, spilling protein in my urine. So my nephrologists ordered a kidney biopsy to learn more about my illness. The test revealed IgM Nephropathy.

That was over 12 years ago, I am now 15. I have had many years of blood tests, medications, some hospital stays, 2 kidney biopsies, and of course many doctors appointments.

I still struggle with having an illness that there is no known cause or cure. But I don’t really focus on that fact.

I am an advocate for kidney disease. I am trying to help people understand about kidney disease and the need to find a cure. I attended Advocacy Day in DC in 2011, and I am going to continue to be involved.

Another big part of my life is that I am also on a mission to teach people about compassion and kindness.

I see the need for people to understand that they should not judge others, because they do not know what they are going through. I learned this strong lesson first hand, when a video of me lip- syncing the cuppy cake song went viral on YouTube. As you can imagine, it was rather devastating to see some really negative comments, some people were judging my “moon face” my face was rounded and full from taking Prednisone. I got called some pretty bad names, they called me fat. It is a good lesson to not judge others. I want to help people understand that some people who are sick have to take medications that have side effects which are not good.

I am currently working on Project Comfort, which is getting people involved in sewing small travel size pillows to be given to comfort children who are hospitalized. The pillows are crafted from bright, happy flannel or cotton prints. Pillows are being donated to children’s hospitals throughout the USA and FedEx has teamed up with me, to ship the pillows.

The past 3 years, I have seen improvement in my health. I have faith and I am hoping for a miracle in the coming days, not just for myself, but for all kidney patients!

Please consider joining me in comforting sick kids by making a donation, or becoming involved in Project Comfort.