• Cassidy Albers

John's Journey to Recovery

Note: Names and locations have been changed for protection of individual

In school, we all learned the basics of a story. There's always a beginning, middle and end with the middle containing some sort of struggle the main character has to overcome. This week we will be seeing a little more struggle than triumph in the life of John, but it's only the middle of this man's story - a moment in time, a transition from childhood to adulthood. John has so much more life to live and dreams to fulfill.

"John came to live at Montana de Luz with advanced HIV when he was 4 years old. Group members will remember him as one of the most energetic and magnetic characters at MdL, making jokes and eager to use the bit of English he knew.

In 2015, he began to complain of pain in his legs. This pain eventually spread and within 6 months, he was in a wheelchair. His doctors and our staff worked to get him a diagnosis but as his condition changed, it became less clear what John was suffering from. Many conditions have been thrown around but to this day, we are unsure what exactly John has.

Eventually, a new doctor started him on a new medication which appeared to turn things around. He was slowly gaining strength and was able to do some physical therapy. We continued on this treatment regime and watched John take his first steps in over a year and a half. This made all the difference and today he no longer uses a wheelchair!

John turned 18 in April and now has to see a new doctor at a different hospital. Because he is now considered an adult, his medication is twice as expensive. Additionally, John dreams of enrolling in a bilingual school where he can study English. We feel learning English will dramatically increase his chances of finding a job that will work for him. He cannot do physical labor and needs a job that will allow him to be seated most of the day."

-Anna Jackson of Montana de Luz

Although John is in a spot of uncertainty at the moment, he has the support of the Montana de Luz community who is striving to help John in his transition into adulthood. John is not alone in his struggle as many children at Montana de Luz have difficulties with their health. To learn more and support organizations who help people like John visit www.orphanworldrelief.org.

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