Jordan Ablett, the wife of retired Geelong footballer Gary Ablett, has opened up about their son Levi’s medical conditions, and how he may never speak.
Three-year-old Levi has a rare degenerative disease which Gary and Jordan first spoke publicly about in 2020.
Now, Jordan has spoken about the difficulties she faces communicating with her baby boy days before the start of this year’s Good Friday fundraising appeal for the Royal Children’s Hospital, for which she is an ambassador.
“It’s really difficult from a practical point of view, but also really difficult just being his mum and not being able to hear his voice or know what he needs. When he gets upset, I have to guess what the problem is,” she told the Herald Sun.
“Although I will say, despite him not being able to communicate, I do feel as though I’ve really learnt to understand him over the years – I have had to put a lot of confidence in my parenting.”
Jordan said food and drink could also be a challenge for Levi, with a risk of him aspirating if they weren’t blended enough and got into his lungs.
She added that a wide team of people at the Royal Children’s Hospital monitored his health, and that being an ambassador for the hospital’s fundraiser was “the absolute least I can do for the kids”.
“As a mum who relies heavily on the RCH (Royal Children’s Hospital) for my son’s care, I fully understand how important it is that we be generous so that the children can continue to receive world-class care,” she wrote on the Instagram post announcing her role as an ambassador.
“These kids are bright lights and we all want to see them shine.
“Your support is truly heartfelt by all impacted by the RCH.”
Jordan first opened up about her son’s condition on an episode of The Significant Others podcast, including the moment she and her husband received the news of his diagnosis.
“I just remember sitting with Gaz in that meeting and when they said it, I just remember absolutely breaking down,” she said.
“It’s one thing to receive a diagnosis which just confirms that Levi has a rare and degenerative disease.
“However, it’s another thing to understand that it is life-threatening and that’s like a whole other ball game and a whole other situation in itself because that stuff you just can’t prepare for.
“There is a very short life expectancy, which is why I constantly say to people when they ask about Levi that we are literally just taking it day by day because we have no idea what the future holds.”
Image: Good Friday Appeal (Facebook)
This article first appeared on OverSixty.