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Jaden Briggs

Jaden Briggs

Age: 6 | Gender: M

Jaden was diagnosed with B-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, also known as blood cancer. On November 18th, 2019.

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Jaden's Story

On Friday November 15th, 2019, after what we thought would be a typical sick visit with our pediatrician for our 3-year-old Jaden, we were sent that morning immediately to MUSC Children's Hospital due to Jaden’s hemoglobin level being a dangerously low level of 1.2 (average range should be around 12.5). Once we arrived at the ER that late Friday morning, Jaden started countless blood transfusions and platelet transfusions around the clock for the next 3 days. The next 3 days of our lives were filled with uncertainty, fear, unanswered questions, tons of unfamiliar faces, bags of hanging blood, countless tubes for around the clock testing, and tears. We wouldn’t find our answer until Monday night, November 18th,2019 , around 6pm, when the doctors came to grab myself and my husband (Bobby), and asked us to follow them so that we may speak in private. Walking that hallway to the conference room, thats when it hits that if it was good news, why wouldn't they just tell us while we were in the room? Now, sitting at the table, across from the 2 doctors, the most devastating words that can be told to a parent were said: "Your son has cancer". B-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia aka blood cancer.

Immediately upon hearing this news, time freezes, and your lives change. He's no longer allowed to eat certain foods because of how they can interact with the chemotherapy (until his body starts to adjust to it). That beautiful head of hair will slowly start to fall out in the next 3 weeks. Your 3-year-old, rambunctious, fearless boy will now have to have a port placed into his chest going into a major artery in the neck so be careful when playing with your son. He's no longer allowed to be in daycare surrounded by other kids his age that he's been around for the past 2 years. So that daycare you used daily to make sure someone is watching your child so that you can be an adult and go to work monday-friday,8am-6pm.... Yeah, that's now no longer available as an option. That job you just got hired with, after completing school less than a year prior, that's going to be put on hold until further notice. Make a decision on who the "bread-winner" is for the family so that one person can become the primary source of financial income to take care of your family of 5 so that the other parent can stay at home with your now immune compromised child. Avoid crowds and shopping. Hey, lets also throw into that mix that the flu season this year has been at an all time high and a global pandemic has now made it's way into the USA. What do you do? And, go!

Hi there, my name is Kelli Briggs, my husband is Bobby Briggs, and we have 3 incredible kids Jackson (M,21), Peyton (F, 18), and Jaden (M,6). Our son Jaden was diagnosed with b-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia on November 18th, 2019 at the age of 3. Now, lets fast forward ALMOST 3 years and I am proud to inform you that Jaden is OFFICIALLY “NO MO’ CHEMO” as on February 7th, 2022! Not even 48 hours later, Jaden started in-person kindergarten on February 9th. And then, on May 12, he had his port removed! Hang on, there’s more… In June, Jaden started taking Karate classes with some of his buddies and is still loving it. On August 17th, he got to attend the first day of school at Drayton Hall elementary school as a first grader….oh my, time needs to now slow down! I can’t believe how many huge events have happened so far this year in Jaden's life. Unfortunately, a lot of adjustments have been made, since Jaden started back with school, that have put more stress on our plates.

With Jaden starting school, I have now returned to work full time in clinic (medical assistant at doctors care) and feeling as if I’m being thrown into the deep end of how to be surrounded by society again. Also, to note: for my line of work, I wear an N95 mask ALL.DAY.LONG. for 12 hours. It was such an adjustment doing from strict quarantine to now in an office wearing a mask and being surrounded by sick patients. As i’m learning to emotionally navigate into this new “norm”, I totally forgot about childcare for the summertime! So I think, Ok, i’ll pick up some extra shifts…not a problem since I’ll have someone watching Jaden while i’ll be able to work an extra day… Now I’m having to learn how to budget my finances to cover the expense of childcare, my husband would fall ill, and be required to be out of work for 3
months. Holy moly. He’s the “bread winner” of our family. His pays the mortgage, electricity, health insurance, both car insurance, and many of bills that he covers. What now? Well, you get another job to make ends meet. I now work 2 medical jobs. My now full-time job hours are Monday- Friday 8am-5pm and also work at Doctors Care every other weekend. I work 12 days straight before I get 2 days and then repeat. My time that i get to have with my family is extremely short. I work this much to support my family, keep a roof over their head, food on our plates, and to keep Jaden social with doing karate after school. I work this much to provide for not only their needs but for “wants” as well.

I need Jaden to see, learn, and understand that you have to work hard in life for the things we need, I’m missing out on a lot of valuable time in his life because I literally work all the time, and still struggling to make ends meet. However, with your help and generosity with working with Courageous Kidz for Christmas, the words “Thank You” just aren’t enough. The fact of knowing Santa will be coming to see my sweet boy is such a huge and incredible chunk of stress lifted, especially with his birthday (12/11/15) being 2 weeks before Christmas. Thank you so much for the bottom of heart!

Jaden's Hobbies & Interests

Here’s a little bit about Jadens and his likes:

Jaden is the coolest, sweetest, funniest, sarcastic, and most intelligent 6-year-old you will ever come across. He's such a happy lil guy that loves to use his imagination. He love to entertain people with his stories, dance moves, and songs. Jaden absolutely loves learning! He loves science and math the most. In his free time, his favorite hobby is playing on his Nintendo switch or learning from YouTube on how to beat his games on Nintendo switch. He's a "gamer" and loves all games that involve Zelda, Mario, zombies, and building things. He’s really into Zelda, Minecraft, Splatoon, and REALLY wants to learn/play Fortnite.

When we can, Jaden loves being outside, walking his dog Polly, going to the neighborhood park and attempting to play outdoor sports! He loves to kick the soccer ball with dad, play some over-the-closet-door basketball hoops, running, fishing, being on the water or at the beach, and riding on his razor scooter. When not playing outside, Jaden loves to build with building blocks, making drums out of anything he can, singing at the top of his lungs, playing with nerf guns, and loves to draw!

As a family, we try to do family movie night at least once a week where we pick out a Disney or any new release movie. Our family favorite movie and shows will always be Nightmare before Christmas **(ALL year round), The Grinch, King Kong, Godzilla, Adam’s Family, Mickey Mouse and friends, The Incredibles, The Croods, Paw Patrol, Toy Story, Scooby Doo, Spider Man with Miles, Bluey, Friends, only on special occasions he gets to watch Spongebob Square Pants, and of course YouTube game tutorials. Some of Jadens absolute favorite would be Disney’s Zombies, Nightmare before Christmas, anything Disney really, and STAR WARS!! He’s really gotten into Star Wars lately!

Jadens favorite colors are green, blue, red, yellow, and black. For tops/shirts, He's a small or size 7/8. for coats or pull-over hoodies, hes a small or medium but just depends on the fit (if more loose fit, i would probably go with a medium). For bottoms, Jaden is EXTREMELY tall and skinny at a size 8 and needs help in finding any bottoms in a "tall length" if possible. For underwear, he wears a 7. Pajamas are his favorite so I tend to upsize for those so a size 8 or small/med . For shoes, he's a size 3.5 in kids. HE LOVES SHOES! Shoes are his absolutely favorite thing about an outfit! The shoes we have found that fit his foot the best are Nike, adidias, vans, and converse. I will say though that he is in need of some new house houses/slippers that are slip resistant. Jadens style is very laid back, relaxed, preppy polos occasionally, surf/fishing, and skater. He loves accessorizing with his shoes and baseball style hats (flat bill kinda hats).

Jaden's Wishlist

Top 10 main things for Christmas ideas: 1) Shoes, clothes 2) “Anything Zelda” - directly from his list to Santa 3) Disney castle toy- directly from his list to Santa 4) Spiderman and/or Venom toys, clothes 5) Nintendo Switch Games: Fortnite, Minecraft, Splatoon 6) ANYTHING to do with nightmare before Christmas, Star Wars, or Disney’s Zombies 7) Disney character plush/stuffed toys 8) Toy box 9) Queen size bedding 10) Learning tools for reading Shirt Size: 7/8 or Med Youth Pant Size: 8 tall/skinny Shoe Size: 3.5 kids


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