Having a child in the hospital can be a very tough time for families and kids, but one family is trying to ease the stress with their Made in Vermont comfortable clothes.
4-year-old Stella Thomas is one infectiously happy little girl.
She loves cats, her sister Evelyn and playing doctor.
She's smiling now but things haven't always been easy for the Thomas family.
"She was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma at three weeks old," said Emily Thomas from Tough Threads.
It's a type of cancer that occurs most often in infants and young kids.
Reporter Gina Bullard: What was it like for you and your family when she was diagnosed?
Emily Thomas: It was definitely terrifying one of the most difficult things.
A difficult time that the Thomas family hopes to make easier for other kids going through similar situations. They created a clothing line called Tough Threads. They are clothes with a built in heart pocket to store port tubes.
"What it is is a tube that goes directly to their heart supplying the medication they need," said Thomas.
Bullard: So, this isn't something that comes on and off?
Emily Thomas: No these kids are living with ports sometimes up to two years or longer.
Kids often tuck the tubes into their pants or tape them to their bodies. Stella and her family struggled to find clothes that could accommodate the medical equipment. Tough Threads is a cleaner more comfortable solution.
From onesies to kids pajamas, the items are made in the family's home and range from $35 to $50.
"We all know these kids are really special but this makes them look a little special," said Emily Thomas.
Doctors caught Stella's first tumor after mom Emily says she wouldn't stop crying.
Bullard: You knew something wasn't right?
Emily Thomas: I had intuition something wasn't right and i kept pursuing that.
They went to Philadelphia to get a second opinion.
"She had one on her adrenal gland and that had metastasized to her liver was that was full of the tumors were there and then they discovered she had it on the other side of her body," said Emily Thomas.
She immediately had to undergo three rounds of chemotherapy. A tough time for the family, but Stella has had no evidence of cancer for two years. She goes back yearly for checkups, something this doctor in training looks forward to.
Bullard: Why do you want to be a doctor?
Stella: To fix people up.
Comfortable made in Vermont clothing for courageous little people.
None of the clothes have any Velcro on them, all buttons and snaps that way care takers can access the ports without waking up or bothering the kids.
PO Box 4508