It was a sunny day and the Boston common buzzed with the noise of children laughing, screaming and playing; everywhere you looked you could see kids being kids. Magnus fit right in with them, playing alongside all the other little boys and girls in the crowded playset. After much running around it was time to go; with red cheeks and slightly winded Magnus was done playing.
I sat amazed with a smile on my face as I watched him play. Today was my first time meeting Magnus and I was blown away by how normal this warrior seemed to be. I had heard a lot about Magnus from his dad who is my close friend. I knew that he had many health problems and that he had undergone 3 open heart surgeries, beginning just days after his birth as well as a surgery when he was only four years old for which he stayed in the hospital for a very long time. I knew that he had just learned how to swallow pills and is planning on getting his feeding tube out. I knew a lot of things, but nothing could prepare me for what an amazing attitude and positive outlook he has on life.
Magnus’s journey began before he was brought into this world. The doctors noticed some abnormalities with his heart on the ultrasound and began to plan surgery to correct this abnormality as soon as he was born. After multiple surgeries and a lot of time in the hospital, Magnus was finally able to go home. Four years later, Magnus needed another heart surgery. Open heart surgery is beyond scary and would scare anyone, but Magnus trusted his doctors and his parents who said it would all be okay; it was.
Magnus has had health problems follow him throughout his life. Having to take medications daily, having a feeding tube, having to go through three open heart surgeries, doctor visits and pain, but he has never complained.
During our meeting I asked Magnus a few questions about what it is like to be sick and his answers astonished me. The most shocking answer of all was when I asked him if he would want to be normal. At only nine years old, Magnus turned to me and said “That would be boring, this makes me special.”
Magnus has many challenges every day in his life, but he is a warrior and more importantly, he is a great kid. His favorite shows are Bob’s Burgers and Adventure Time, he is into punk rock, he loves the Ramones, he is working on his very own comic book, and he is a lively and amazing 9 year old. Magnus does not and will not let any health problems stand in his way of being who he is. Despite all of his issues, he will still play on the playground with the other kids and although he may seem just like them, he has climbed mountains to get there.