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The Bellissimo Family

After consulting a pediatrician about Evelyn's development, we were referred to McMaster for Endocrinology. Following extensive blood tests and an MRI on June 9th, 2023, we received a life-changing call.

Evelyn was diagnosed with synchronous suprasellar and pineal tumors, both on her pituitary gland.

After further treatment and testing, the medical team devised a game plan: 4 rounds of chemo and 24 radiation treatments. Our lives were turned upside down and we began fathoming how we would coordinate Evelyn’s treatment while living well over an hour from the hospital in Fort Erie.
That’s when we were referred to RMHC South Central Ontario.

Describing our first stay at the House as “helpful” would be an understatement. Without RMHC's support, I don’t know how we would’ve coped. Living over an hour away from McMaster would have made treatment days incredibly challenging for Evelyn. Thankfully, RMHC was in our corner – staying at the House five days a week for radiation treatment eliminated worries about her being sick on the long drive home after treatment, as well as the financial burden of traveling to and from the hospital.

The Games Room at the House became our favorite place to relax in the evenings, with Evelyn choosing to play pool almost every night. The support RMHC SCO receives from donors helps take worry off our plates – worry about the financial burden, about time and planning, and about our family’s mental and physical wellness.

I also can’t go without mentioning that without the Ronald McDonald Family Rooms located in the hospital, I don't know how we would have gotten through it all.

I'm happy to report that Evelyn "rang the bell" on December 12th, 2023, signaling the end of her radiation. However, she still has a long road ahead due to damage to her pituitary gland from the tumors, requiring a lifetime of medications and doctor visits. Thankfully, we can continue to rely on RMHC South Central Ontario as our home away from home.

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