(Nassau County, N.Y.) — When 4-year-old Matteo Ferruzi started feeling sick, his mom, Jennifer, wasn’t that concerned.
“Honestly, we just thought it was a stomach virus,” said Jennifer Ferruzzi, of St. James, New York.
But other symptoms quickly developed, including Matteo’s eyes beginning to cross.
Matteo was rushed to Cohen’s Children’s Hospital, where it was discovered he had an inoperable malignant brain tumor.
Matteo had emergency surgery to relieve the pressure on his brain. He was then sent home to recover before he could begin chemotherapy.
But that’s when things became more complicated. His mom came down with COVID-19 and had to self-quarantine.
“It was hard for me to be in the bedroom so sick and hearing him out there, not be able to tell him it’s OK, Mommy’s here,” said Jennifer Ferruzzi.
Matteo also tested positive for the coronavirus, which has delayed him from getting the cancer treatments he needs.
“The best time I can get a good cry in is when I am in the shower,” his mother said.
Jennifer Ferruzzi says both she and Matteo were recently re-tested, but both are still positive.
She is hoping and praying the next test will give doctors the go-ahead to start chemotherapy.
Jennifer Ferruzzi has a message for other parents: “If your child is showing symptoms or complaining about something, absolutely get them into their pediatrician right away. And even if it’s nothing, it is better to be safe than sorry.”
Once he can start chemotherapy, Matteo will have treatments for at least a year. Their friends and family have set up a GoFundMe page to help.