Prospective Neglect: The Case of Noah McAdams
Two hashtags that haunt my dreams, that I see everywhere, that I hope someday very soon, I never have to see, again.
I, Taylor Bland, am the mother of Noah McAdams, and the stories you have seen on the news only give you the tiny snippet of our lives that they want to share with you to boost their ratings. So here I am, in full raw openness, to tell you the whole story from the beginning to where we stand (I will keep updated as best I can).
Noah came to me as my spirit baby right after my great grandfather died. I knew I was pregnant the day I missed my period back in October, but I was just 18 and I was still trying to figure out how in the world I could tell my family, even though I was personally very excited. After my great grandfather died, I had a vision of him introducing me to a little boy, and I knew right away I was having a boy, Noah-Thomas. My pregnancy was absolutely amazing, I worked through it up to about 39 weeks.
Noah McAdams was born about 42 weeks gestation, on July 3rd, at 10:33am after a home birth transfer, because my midwife failed me. My labor was generally quick for a first-time mom, though it was nothing like I had imagined.
Noah was perfect, everything I had ever wanted.
I did go back to work at 6 weeks, and my husband was the stay at home dad, it was the best option we had finance-wise at the time, but I still exclusively pumped for him, and even pumped and donated to 10 other babies within the 18 months that I was pumping!
Noah was such a smart little guy, he learned to walk and talk so quickly, loved nature, and had a healthy and balanced life.
Both sides of our family got really intense and over-protective after Noah was born, but even more so after his first birthday. Between the stress of my job, still adjusting to being parents, and the stalker-worthy hovering of our family members, Joshua and my relationship was strained.
On August 8th, 2016, Joshua and I got into an argument, and at this point now I cannot even recall what it was about, really. Noah was having a hard time falling asleep that evening and Joshua and I were griping at each other like all couples do. Noah began to cry wanting to be picked up and held, so that is what I did. Out of frustration that we did not get the full opportunity to communicate and finish our conversation, Joshua threw a bucket to the ground. Not at me. Not at Noah. To the ground. It popped up, bonked me, and had broken on the ground and the side of it caught Noah’s cheek and left a scratch. The mama bear in me freaked out, and I went next door and called the authorities right away. Joshua spent a couple days in jail and was sentenced to 6 months of probation and Batterers Intervention. I stayed away, letting Joshua heal and learn from his mistakes, I even filed a restraining order under the encouragement of the current CPI on our case. The case was quickly closed, Joshua’s therapy was going well, and after several months, Noah and I returned home, and life was different; it was happy, healthy and better, again. I became a Domestic Violence counselor at a local shelter and our family was whole. I shared that bit to be absolutely transparent as the news makes it sound horrendous. It was not right, but it is no reason to take our child away, years later, after so much improvement and no intervention in between.
When he was two, I was a gestational surrogate to twins. They were born two days after his third birthday, and a couple weeks after that we moved to a GORGEOUS state park, as on-site caregivers where we were provided a huge cabin. We explored the trails, gave tours of the massive museum/antique home, and enjoyed all the nature that Chinsegut Hill had to offer. Unfortunately, unbeknownst to us, the cabin had a mold problem, so we had to leave sooner than we expected, after only three months of living our dream life.
We moved in with my grandmother, with the intention of fixing up a gifted mobile home. It had to be gutted and entirely restored, so it was a long-term project for my husband. Before we could finish it, Noah got sick.
The days before he was sick we had gone canoeing, he went to school alongside me while I helped out at my mom’s daycare, we went to the zoo, and then even to the park and hiking trails at the very beginning of April. On April 2nd, we could see the lethargy, and on and off fever, we were not sure what it was but he always kicked things quickly, so we were hopeful, and gave him snuggles, immune boosting supplements and healthy food. On April 3rd, we took him to one of the parks he loves to get some sunshine and fresh air. Unfortunately, that day, Noah would not play. He would not get off the bench. That afternoon we took him into Urgent Care, they assumed he had mono, but after palpating his stomach, they felt enlarged organs, and he broke out in petichae and round bruising. The doctor sent us immediately over to the local ER across the street, where we discovered Noah had a 2.7 hemoglobin and a platelet count of 4 (if you do not know labs, this is near death).
They put him in a helicopter without us to fly him to John Hopkins All Children’s St Pete, where our lives would be forever changed.
When we arrived, he was in a crib bed in the PICU, surrounded by staff, monitors all over him, and terrified. He was so happy to see us. This was after just about 30 minutes separated while we drove, and he flew in the helicopter.
It took him 7 hours to get his first blood transfusion, it was pretty ridiculous if you ask me. Then, he reacted poorly to the blood transfusion, immediately spiking a fever, and they had to flush out his body. He did not receive a full bag of blood until over 12 hours after he arrived.
The next day, they took his blood and many other tests, pokes and prods, and the doctor came in after a little while with a blank expression on her face and stated the words that will forever ring in my mind as the first words that set off Hell’s fury against Noah, “your son has acute lymphoblastic leukemia.” Joshua and I just cried next to each other as I held Noah so tightly in my arms.
Shortly thereafter, we were transferred to the Oncology unit. They wanted to deliver chemotherapy ASAP so they started presenting us with the protocol. I was disgusted when they advised his treatment plan was three and a half years long, WHAT?! Chemotherapy for three years?! That’s a death sentence. We knew at that point there had to be another option. We asked several times if we could have Noah seen by a different provider, if he could be put on the low-risk protocol with less chemotherapy. If we could moderate/shorten the protocol or use alternative therapies, instead or alongside. We were met every time with, “No. Nope. We do not recommend any supplements as we do not know how they interact. It has not been studied enough. This is the only protocol available to him.” We were completely shut down and brushed off, the doctors hardly took anytime to answer any questions, other than with “No,” “Why?” or “I don’t know.” There were many other discrepancies, concerning sights, neglect, malpractice and more, that caused us massive fear and concern for our child that I will not go into now, but later. The positive side was that Noah was blast-free just three days after the start of induction, THREE. DAYS. We were released from the hospital not long after and went to stay at beautiful Chinsegut in one of their luxury guest cabins, for about a week.
We stated MULTIPLE TIMES that we would be transferring out of their care and would like a referral, but we were given none. We spent days calling to different providers and it seemed to keep going in circles. We attended our appointment on Friday, the 19th for a simple blood draw. We had located a physician in Ft Lauderdale that would help us but did not have availability for a couple weeks. We told John Hopkins we had found another provider and no longer needed their services and originally they said that was fine, but then they began to harass us a few hours later. We consulted with a lawyer at this point and did not return any more of their phone calls, as we were well within our rights to get a second opinion.
Since we had felt we had over-stayed our welcome at Chinsegut, we went to stay with a friend in Orlando while we figured out the best game plan. One of our options for providers had been in Ohio, so instead of waiting around, we decided to go, and we had a friend willing to come down from Kentucky and pick us up and let us stay with her. Noah had a wonderful time playing with her littles and enjoying the nature that Kentucky had to offer!
Just a couple days in Kentucky, before we even got to go see the other physician we had in mind in Ohio, the local Sheriffs office came to pick us up. At first they did not even want to take Noah to the hospital, they just wanted to have EMS check his vitals and place him in foster care, even though the Emergency Protective Order stated that he was in need of urgent, life-saving medical care. Appalled, we insisted he be medically evaluated. His lab work came back PERFECT and HEALTHY. We stayed the night with him in the hospital, but the next day he was ripped from us; we were forced out of the hospital like criminals, and our baby went to a foster home that night. The case worker lied and said he would be staying in the hospital, and that she would be staying with him.
He was flown down to Florida.. Again, an immunocompromised child on an airplane with a stranger case-worker, on minimal sleep… smart, seems like they really care about his health, right?
They placed him at John Hopkins hospital again and trapped him in a caged hospital bed in diapers (he was FULLY potty trained with us), to watch TV and eat disgusting hospital food for two days, with no visitors allowed, not even a phone call. Can you imagine how TERRIFIED he was?
Our shelter hearing in court placed him with my mother because we were “flight risks and Noah was not safe” and yet, the hospital kept stalling on when they would allow her to come get him and he was still allowed no visitors.
We finally got to see him on May 3rd for TWO HOURS. He could not believe his eyes when we walked in, he gasped, smiled, then started bawling and jumped into my arms. He told me, “I have been screaming and crying for you” and just clung to me nearly the whole visit, but it ended too soon. Shortly after that, my mom was able to come pick him up.
At first, I was able to go see him at my moms, but when I mentioned to the medical professionals that he had had blood in his stool for the THIRD time, I had my visitation rights taken away and brought down to two hours a week, supervised by a case worker.
From that point, we only got to see Noah at medical appointments and John Hopkins is so hostile and nasty with us, it has been nearly impossible to get any quality time with him. At one point, John Hopkins even kicked Joshua, my husband and Noah’s dad, out for being “aggressive” after asking the nurses to stop encouraging Noah to play with slime and poop toys that they have available in the facility. The first time we got to both spend time with him outside of a medical setting since he was taken away, was his birthday, which at first the state was not wanting to allow.
They forced us to file a motion in court to be allowed to see OUR CHILD on his FOURTH BIRTHDAY, get more visitation time, and obligate them to do a home study. We got to play at the park with him for a few hours and bring cake (a healthy specially-made cake just for him) and presents. I also got to go to my moms and spend Fourth of July with him, again. I make effort to go see him every day now, but sometimes due to other’s schedules, it simply is not possible. I still do not understand why we do not have him HERE, IN OUR HOME.
Case management has not scheduled the home study yet, we have been waiting over a week for our third-party supervisor approval so Joshua and I can hopefully both see Noah daily, and up to this point, Noah has only received one therapy appointment, over two months after being kidnapped and traumatized, only ONE!!
In regards to the medical end, Noah’s labs are looking very poor. So poor, the doctors finally relaxed on the chemo and had no other option but to not administer last week on 6/2.
Noah STILL has not been allowed his palliative care AT ALL, not a SINGLE bit. We obtained his medical cannabis for him over a month ago, and it has continuously been restricted for absolutely no reason. We FINALLY got the state to see that Noah was struggling. He is not eating, he is vomiting and nauseous, and his labs are poor, this child needs to be able to EAT and Zofran is not doing a single thing for him. John Hopkins seems to be unable to acknowledge when they are killing a child right in front of his own family and at least give him some palliative care to ease his symptoms. John Hopkins is literally the only reason Noah does not have medical cannabis right now, THE ONLY REASON and NO ONE but us is standing up for him and it is absolutely sickening.
What will it take for the state to see that Noah needs his mom and dad, and he needs some type of complementary care?!?! We are so scared for our little boy, and HE is so scared.
No one can tell me that my child is normal, that this treatment is normal, that this treatment is healthy, that he is healthy. You cannot look at his labs, at his mental state of being, at his digressions and call him a healthy boy. He was healthy when he had his mom and dad, when he had nutritional, whole foods, when he was not traumatized by the people that claim to have his best interest at heart, when he got to be a kid and not have to worry when the next time he would see his mom and dad would be.
I honestly do not know how these people sleep at night, and continue their jobs as if they are doing anything positive for Noah, at all. I can only pray that he can make it through until we can get him back, and we can heal him, we can help him, because everyone else is simply murdering, neglecting and abusing him, and they tell us to smile about it, be happy about it, be grateful.
I cannot rest, nor be at peace, nor be wholly healthy for myself, until my child is home in my arms for good.
These are Noah’s “normal” symptoms, to date, so far:
- Fluctuating heart rates, tachycardia
- Blood in stool
- Blood in urine
- Back Pain
- Neuropathy in feet/legs
- Full body inflammation and swelling
- Sleeping for longer than normal post-procedure with new anesthesiologist
- A foreign object being placed in our sons body
- Scented and dyed slime
- To be away from his parents for an extended period of time, digress in speech, get randomly angry at us and say hateful things
- Poisons routinely injected into his veins and spine on a weekly basis, long-term, and more poisons administered orally, daily
You can help us! Help us bring Noah HOME! Our trial is in mid-August to determine whether or not we are guilty or innocent of “prospective neglect” and we need help with finances for legal, for doctors to testify on Noah’s behalf, to bring him home sooner!!! We are the only ones left fighting for his health, rather than our egos, please keep fighting and believing in him and us.
Thank you so so much!! I will keep this updated as much as I possibly can. We appreciate your support more than you know.
UPDATE Hearing 8/9: Request to Increase Visitation Summary
-Taylor sees Noah nearly every day, supervised by her mother
-Joshua still only sees Noah 2-4 hours a week
-Our requested supervisor (friend) was denied because she could not remember word for word what she said on social media several months ago and the judge offered that she sign a deal with a bondsman to forfeit her home and car, if she were to break the rules (NO OTHER SUPERVISOR HAS HAD THIS REQUESTED OF THEM), and they DISCRIMINATED against her and us because she SUPPORTS us. They also tried to claim that “Noah doesn’t know” the supervisor we are asking to help. Well guess what he didn’t know anyone in the foster care home you put him in, didn’t know the case worker you stuck him on a plane with to go back to Florida, he doesn’t know any of the case workers, GAL, or anyone else involved in this case that is “so trustworthy” for that matter so your claims make you look pretty idiotic and hypocritical. Two of the parties said they were uNcOmFoRtAbLe with the fact that the supervisor we wanted approved couldn’t remember some things she said word for word. Well these same parties so happened to not even be able to remember our child’s name, even correct legal name (ahem, who the hell is “Jonathon” and “Jacob McAdams” and “Relevance! WHOS NOAH?!” #HisNameIsNoah) for a majority of the past few months of court proceeding so I’d say y’all have no place to be critiquing memory at any point.
-The hearing ended up with not much changing at all, except one additional two hour case management visit in their office, and their office is DISGUSTING and not healthy for an immunologically compromised child
-We have VOLUNTEERED for a mental health evaluation which will be complete before trial