Hi, I’m Anthony.
I’ve always played soccer – ever since I was a little kid. And like every little kid, I wanted to become
a professional soccer player. Since I am eight years old,
I live with short bowel syndrome. That means that they had to surgically remove
major parts of my small intestine. I’ve since survived through parenteral nutrition. When I think back to that day,
the day everything changed, I can remember and still feel the deep pain that it caused. Anthony was actually showing all the clinical signs
of a volvulus and was operated on. During the surgery, doctors discovered
that his entire small intestine had twisted and was affected
and had to be almost completely removed. This left him with short bowel syndrome.
He has since had to rely on parenteral nutrition for all these years. He needs an infusion every night –
a specially formulated infusion that actually
provides him with everything he needs for life. In the past I was actually connected to an infusion
for 16 or 17 hours a day. Today, the infusion just runs during the evening, 12 hours long. Evenings are the time I’m reminded of my illness. Anthony is a bundle of energy, a positive thinker and, frankly, a role model for us all. I see myself as a winner. I never gave up. I kept on going – no matter how many times I fell. Anthony leads a very full life.
He has a lot of friends, travels a lot. I’m studying. I drive a car. I play soccer.
I hang out with my friends. I do all the same mundane things everyone else does.
I’m in charge of my own destiny. We’ve become really good friends.
Our friendship has developed over many years. Sometimes I’m also his mentor, whether it’s for the really big questions or even just the simple, everyday issues. We meet to play soccer, have coffee together.
He really has become a close friend. I can learn a lot from him.
Especially when it comes to soccer,
he’s an excellent player and also a true team player. Soccer is a great way to show that you’re just like everyone else. Nobody actually knows I’m sick. When I’m on the soccer field, the only thing that matters is whether I’m good or not. Anthony never gives up.
His positive attitude affects and motivates everyone. Adopting his outlook and learning from it
and applying it elsewhere would be good for anyone. I am definitely a happy person. I only have one goal: to motivate people
who are in the same situation I am, who have lived
through the same things as I have, and to try to help them achieve amazing things.