Parents

The Heartwarming Reason Why Going Back To School Is Such A Big Deal For These Kids

Check out these inspiring photos and stories.

Going back to school is an annual event for most families, but for many brave kids, this milestone represents a major victory.

In honor of back-to-school season, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta (CHOA) put the spotlight on some inspiring patients who have overcome many obstacles to return to the classroom. The hospital created a photo series called “Back to School with Something New.”

“As you already know, most kids headed back to school this week with a little something new – new backpacks, pencils, and gear,” a CHOA representative told The Huffington Post. “But for many Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta patients, that something new came in the form of organs, casts, diagnoses, and more.”

Keep scrolling for first-day-of-school photos of these awesome kids and their incredible stories.

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CHOA
Ten-year-old Jakob is starting fifth grade after receiving a heart transplant and spending 126 days in the hospital. He was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome, a congenital heart defect that occurs when the left side of the heart is underdeveloped, preventing normal blood flow.As a baby, Jakob had three open heart surgeries and thrived without complications for almost eight years. But in March, he experienced heart failure and was placed on the transplant list. After 95 days, he received a new heart.
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CHOA
Jakob loves sports, especially baseball, and is looking forward to getting back in the game this year.
3
CHOA
Sixteen-year-old Tatyana was in a terrible car accident at the end of the last school year. She and her friends were heading home from a pool party when the SUV they were riding in flipped three times.The car landed on the side where she was riding, and her left arm was shattered. She underwent a series of surgeries at CHOA, and metal screws and pins were used to hold her arm in place.
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CHOA
Now, a few months after the accident, Tatyana is sporting her bright orange arm brace as she enters her junior year of high school.
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CHOA
On April 1, 16-year-old Matthew received a new liver. He has cystic fibrosis and visited the hospital in December due to suspected internal bleeding. Doctors identified his liver as the cause and stabilized him. In March, he returned to the hospital in liver failure and was placed on the transplant list. Within three weeks, he received a new liver.
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CHOA
Matthew is starting his junior year of high school. He's excited to go camping on the weekends with his family again.
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CHOA
Around the end of the last school year, 9-year-old Violet started feeling very tired and losing weight. Though doctors initially believed it may be stress, she returned for blood tests after her symptoms failed to improve. After one test revealed that her blood sugar level was 458, Violet went to the hospital and was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.
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CHOA
Over the summer, Violet learned to use finger pricks to check her blood sugar and started taking five to six insulin shots daily ... all while competing on the swim team.Now that she's starting fourth grade, she has a special bag to carry all her diabetes supplies to school.
First Day of School Pictures