He’s just like any other four-year-old little boy. He likes superheroes and robots, bounces in his chair while chattering, and alters between giving high-fives and clinging to his mother’s leg- a perfect mix of four-year-old charm and timidity.
Within the first month of Mason’s life, he underwent open heart surgery. At four years old today, he has had three open heart surgeries. You see, Mason was born with Hypoplasic Left Heart Syndrome. Those big complicated words mean that when he was born, the left side of his heart was severely underdeveloped.
What those words don’t explain is the terror felt when Mason was life flighted to Primary Children’s Medical Center at three weeks old. Those words don’t communicate the pride felt when he was able to lie completely still for his one hour echo exam during his latest checkup. They don’t convey the panic of trying-not-to-panic-until-we-have-more-information felt by his family. And they certainly don’t show the gratitude when members of the community rally behind this precious boy.
Here at Malouf, we’re located within ten minutes of Utah State’s campus, so naturally the Aggies hold a special place in our hearts. When the Utah State University Ambassadors asked us to donate to their charity auction for Mason, we were more than excited to participate. Both of Mason’s parents are Aggie alumni, plus cute Mason can do The Scotsman, Utah State’s prized fight song… and that’s just adorable.
I personally was able to attend the charity auction, and received one of those enviable high-fives before he got too shy to keep talking to all the strangers. I was impressed with just how many businesses within the community donated big items to the auction, and by how high the college students were bidding. There were overnight stays at hotels, pizza for a year, date nights, skateboards and scooters, bedding, salon products, and huge 36” pizzas all donated from local businesses.
Of course, I’m just an outsider, but I was still touched by all of the generosity. Mason’s mom, Mollie, stated it best on her blog, “I am so grateful for people who have done fundraisers or are planning them, they are a lot of hard work, but have helped our family out more than anyone will ever know… There is NO POSSIBLE WAY, none, we could have done this alone, and it makes me cry to know how much help we have gotten from friends, family, and strangers who have fallen in love with Mason.”
What really perfected the night though, were the T-shirts worn by Mason, his big brother, and a handful of the Ambassadors running the auction. They were blue and had a giant “M” encased on the front in the outline of a diamond, with a caption that read “SuperMason.”
The T-shirts were of Mason as a superhero.
If you want to read more about Mason or donate to his cause, visit his blog.