Jillian Lanthier, a single mother of four living in Sooke, has had more than her share of challenges and for the first time is reaching out to the community for help.
Lanthier’s troubles began in 2016 when her son Landen was diagnosed with Systemic JIA, a rare auto-inflamatory disease that affects his autonomic nervous system.
The disease has meant that for the past three years Lanthier needed to take eight-year-old Landen to Victoria General Hospital three times a month for treatments.
Still, she managed to navigate the demands of family, a new job, and Landen’s medical issues and settled into a routine – albeit a busy and challenging one – when she was hit with another serious situation.
In September her son, Nathan, was diagnosed with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome, also knowns as POTS or dysautonomia.
That’s a condition that affects circulation and it’s meant the 15-year-old suffers from non-stop dizziness, nausea, 24-hour-a-day migraines, chest pain, and severe stomach pain. To date, no medication has given Nathan any relief.
To add to the frustration, Nathan has been forced to leave school and faces a six-month wait for an appointment with a specialist who treats this syndrome at the only dysautonomia clinic in B.C. at B.C. Children’s Hospital.”
Lanthier has now set up a GoFundMe page in an attempt to raise the funds she needs to travel outside of B.C. to seek earlier treatment.
In her GoFundMe appeal, she wrote: ” I simply cannot watch my son suffer for an additional six months. This is crazy to me.
“Asking for help is not something I have ever been comfortable with. This is a hard post to write [but] hard reality [is] in front of my eyes. I am a fighter, but some days, I have no fight left in me.