On January 5th 2014, Jayden Dion Stad was diagnosed with a brain tumor known as DIPG (Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma). This type of cancerous tumor affects mainly children and offers no hope of recovery with a 0% survival rate. The median survival time for patients with DIPG is only 6-9 months. Because it is located in the pons part of the brain there has been little research due to the limited access available to this location.
I am the lucky lady who proudly called him my son, and the reason for this foundation revolves around his wonderful spirit that I want to carry forward for years to come.
Jayden was such a good soul with an amazing heart. He spent most of his short fourteen years making people laugh…his own laugh was infectious coming straight from the pit of his belly. He was proud of who he was, he loved to be goofy and didn’t care who was watching or how silly they thought he was being. He simply loved being the reason people smile. as for his loving heart… if Jayden came across anyone who was sad or suffering, it touched him so deeply that he had to help brighten their day and would do anything in his power to give them reason to laugh. He had a rare heart of gold that he carried with him throughout his life to the very end. This showed through his huge circle of friends, he was friends with every adult and child he came in contact with. There was something about him that made him so incredibly special but I could never quite put my finger on it. What I do know is he had a great impact on so many people in his last eighteen months and became a hero to so many.
After Jayden was diagnosed he became very determined to beat this illness regardless of the grim diagnosis from the doctors. He wanted to stay with us and nothing would stand in his way. It was Jayden’s decision to turn to alternative medicine as he knew modern medicine could not fix this. Jayden chose to live on juicing fruit and vegetables, organic food, herbal medicine, vitamins, and we changed to a chemical free home. Our family had the best support, with wonderful friends, relatives, spiritual healers, doctors dealing in natural medicines, and a community above no other who came together so Jayden could get the best care.
In April 2015, fifteen months post diagnosis, we were noticing that Jayden’s success up to this point was starting to be defeated by the monster that is DIPG. An MRI confirmed that we were nearing the end of his beautiful life on this earth. On June 5th my beautiful boy Jayden passed away peacefully at home where he chose to be with the people he loved. Jayden stayed so strong to the very end and tried to remain positive at all times. He is a true hero in the eyes of so many and deserves the recognition I hope this foundation will give him… which brings me to the reason for Butterfly Kisses…
Jayden’s wish was to give what was left from fundraisers to other children with DIPG once he was healed. He did not receive the healing he wanted and deserved, but nevertheless he IS healed as he can run, sing and dance, and be free of suffering. This foundation was built in his honor, to keep giving and putting a smile on the faces of others if only for a moment, to show the world the heart of a boy who always put others before himself, and mostly to remind people of his existence and that this little hero I proudly call my son walked this earth.