Introducing Emily: Local Woman Seeks Help for Her Daughter
“All gone,” Emily Sells says covering her eyes in the video above. Her little brother, Hunter, giggles with delight. “All gone,” she repeats leaning in; her thinning hair hinting at problems with her health.
Emily struggles just to live. There is the distinct possibility that someday soon she may be “all gone.”
The doctors say that Emily has a severe case of infantile Crohn’s Disease. Her mother, Monique Parker, originally from Humboldt County but now living in Redwood City to be closer to her daughter’s medical care, simply says Emily has ulcers inside her intestines. “The ulcers bleed and it makes it so her body won’t absorb nutrients,” Parker explained in an interview this weekend.
In many ways Emily’s an ordinary six-year-old girl. She likes splashing in puddles
She helps her mom with her little brother. She feeds him
She goes to school when she can.
But she’s had more medical procedures in her six short years than the rest of us will ever have. At 6 months old, her mother says that she was medevacked to a Bay Area hospital with symptoms that the doctors couldn’t explain. For months, medical professionals searched for a diagnosis.
“She was taken completely off of food between eight months and a year,” Parker said. “The doctors let me introduce food again when she was about a year. But she didn’t really want to eat.”
Now Emily is fed through her gtube. The formula, her mother says, goes through the walls of her stomach and “releases food right into her belly.”
She received a stem cell transplant in July of 2013. (One of the first such stem cell transplants, explained her mother.) She was in the hospital for almost six months at this time. She began to improve but, in October of 2014, her mother says, “her disease made an appearance again and to this day she suffers with discomfort, taking daily meds, getting weekly blood draws, having monthly infusions and not having a childhood that most kids have.”
“Emily has undergone more procedures and been through more pain than any adult I know,” says her mother. “She receives beads for every doctor’s visit and procedure; her bead strand is over 5 feet tall!”
Now, Parker says, the doctors are running out of options. “We’re almost at a stand still.” Parker is hoping for some kind of miracle. “I’m looking for anything from natural to regular medicine.” She is also looking for support. “I’m looking for anybody out there that has heard of or going through the same thing,” she said.
Most of all she wants support for Emily. “I want some kind of recognition for everything she goes through every day.”
Parker has a several suggestions for those who would like to help:
- Join Emily’s Facebook page. (Click here and then add.)
- Look at her pictures and read about her.
- Post get well wishes and videos. “She likes to watch them,” Parker explains.
- Donate to Emily’s Gofundme.
- Most of all, Emily would like friends. “Please help my daughter meet kids like her or completely different but amazing-hearted and loving,” says Monique Parker.
Emily is living in Palo Alto now to be near her doctors. Eventually, Parker says, they hope to come back to the North Coast. “I was born and raised in Humboldt,” says Parker. “Until [Emily] was three, she lived in Humboldt. That is where all our friends and family are. Eventually, we’d like to move back there but for now this is all we can do.”
Parker is living with the knowledge that someday Emily may be “all gone.” For now, she’s hoping to make her daughter’s life as joyous as possible. Maybe…just maybe, someone will find a cure.
“Please help me get Emily’s story out,” asked Parker when she wrote to us. “My little fighter deserves more!!!”