Saturday, April 24, 2010

Great Article about Gunnar Esiason

The son also rises

Long a poster boy for a deadly disease, BC student Gunnar Esiason hasn’t let it stop him

CHESTNUT HILL — Seventeen years ago, could Boomer Esiason have imagined that he’d be visiting his son Gunnar at college someday? It’s a fair question, one that Esiason, the former NFL quarterback-turned-broadcaster, doesn’t hesitate to tackle.

“Yup, I did imagine it,’’ he says, smiling in Gunnar’s direction. “And I hope I’m a small part of making that happen, not only for Gunnar but for all kids like him.’’

Now a Boston College freshman, Gunnar, 19, was diagnosed at age 2 with cystic fibrosis, an incurable genetic disorder. Primarily affecting the lungs, CF’s symptoms include persistent coughing, shortness of breath, and vulnerability to infection. Those afflicted with CF must undergo frequent treatments to keep their airways open and mucus-free. Not long ago, life expectancy for CF sufferers was less than 20 years.

Thanks in no small part to the Esiasons, that number has nearly doubled over the past decade. The Boomer Esiason Foundation recently passed the $80 million mark in funds raised for CF research and assists young CF sufferers like Gunnar to lead fuller lives through scholarships and other support services.

From the WEEI-AM (850) airwaves, where he appears as a weekly guest during football season, to his CBS post, where he ranks among pro football’s most astute (and outspoken) analysts, Boomer has leveraged his celebrity in just about every way possible to promote awareness of CF. On a scale of 1 to 10, he registers about a 15 on the athlete-supports-worthy-cause meter. What motivates him? The answer sits four feet away in BC’s Alumni Stadium, where father and son agreed to a joint interview on a recent morning.

“My goal is for Gunnar to outlive me,’’ says Boomer, 49, who might be the proudest dad you’ll find among BC’s Class of 2013 parent pool. “That’s the way it should be. My dream is for him to be a dad himself one day, so he can find out all the anxiety that kids bring to their dads.’’

But sending Gunnar off to college? That, he admits, was “anxiety-ridden’’ for both parents. “You can imagine what a dorm room environment is to a CF parent. It’s like, oh my God. It’s crazy.’’

The Esiasons agreeing to an interview, their first on campus since Gunnar arrived at the Heights last fall, underscores their commitment to put a positive face on the disease and its effect on families.

In 1993, Boomer was playing for the New York Jets when Gunnar was diagnosed with CF. Soon after, the two graced the cover of Sports Illustrated. It was a clear signal they’d be waging a very visible campaign against a deadly disease that afflicts some 30,000 Americans. And so they have.

Gunnar would graduate from Friends Academy on Long Island, where he played ice hockey and football, winning the 2008 12th Man Award from the New York State High School Football Association for overcoming “serious physical injury or disability’’ to contribute to his team’s success.Continued...

Read full article at

Friday, April 23, 2010

PICC vs. Port

Thursday, April 22, 2010

PICC Line Massacre

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Why I Don't Do IV's at Home

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

First Day in the Clink

Monday, April 19, 2010

"Sliced Bread" for a CF Toddler

We have some near and dear friends, Jeremy and Rachel, who are the wonderful parents to an adorable little Fibro, Asher. They are a really fun couple and are always a good time to hang out with. We were fortunate enough to get to spend some time with them last week and catch up over dinner (half-priced appetizers to be exact). Now, I could write my whole blog about how wonderful they are, BUT that isn't the point of this post (see title). This post is about the COOLEST innovation they introduced me to about 6 months ago, one that just became available online to anyone who wants one...and has $19.50 plus shipping to spend :)

So here's the back story (and the buildup). Jeremy and Rachel were having a tough time when it came to treatments with little Asher. In the words of Rachel:

The tiny elastic strap to hold his nebulizer mask on his head was terrible. It would fall down the back of his head, or pull on his ears, or roll over the top of his head. Especially when he was really little it was a constant battle to keep the mask on his face.

They were super frustrated, and in their frustration, they began to talk to friends about the problem. One of their friends thought she could come up with a solution. After a few different prototypes, and several tests on the ever adorable "guinea pig", Asher, she developed the world's coolest solution: a fitted headstrap that ACTUALLY works. Here's what Rachel said about the end result:

We no longer have to sit and wrestle with him to hold the mask on his face. He sits comfortably in his gamer chair and does his treatment with his hands free to play with his trains, and soon video games, all while having the mask securely on his face. We've been using this mask holder for 8 months now and are so thankful for it every time it's treatment time.

Since the mask worked so well for them, they encouraged their friend to make them readily available to the CF community. The friend took their suggestion and set up a webpage on Etsy.

Click HERE to order or just to check it out.

Leave any comments or suggestions you may have for the mastermind behind the product...we'll pass them along.

**This is not a paid advertisement. I just happen to think it's the coolest invention and something that some of you may be interested in.

I was just informed that Etsy is having a problem and it says that the product is sold out. If you are looking to order one and are experiencing issues with etsy, please email and she will respond to you.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Random Picture

I got back from NY late last night and I was too tired to write a blog or even open my computer :) Thought I'd post a picture of me at our annual Christmas "Black Out" party. Most people wear suits, but you know I couldn't just follow the crowd!!