When Talia Chestnut and her son, Daelyn, walk into the Conway Health and Resource Center, they are well-known. Daelyn, 5, remembers the medical assistants, front desk staff, and doctors by name and can’t wait to greet them. It’s in these moments that Talia says this location means more than a medical center but a place where relationships are built, bonds are formed, and trust is nurtured.
Talia, a Bellevue community member, started her patient journey with Community of Hope shortly after it opened in 2013 starting medical and dental care. At the time, she was dealing with a mystery illness with unexplained pain that cost her a job. After months of going to various places, she landed at Community of Hope and was able to get a diagnosis and start managing her pain caused by nerve damage.
In 2017, Talia found out she was pregnant in a routine appointment with her primary care provider. Despite a decade-long gap since her last pregnancy, Talia found herself surprised at the warm and understanding care she received. Her doctor promised to be there every step of the way. Talia recalls the comfort of being able to call and ask her provider “anything” and the reassuring feeling that came with knowing she had a team she could rely on.
“During my pregnancy, my doctor got me connected to so many programs that Community of Hope provides that I didn’t know anything about,” says Talia. She signed up for Mommy and Me classes and received essential supplies like playpens, diapers, and bottles of her choice.
Talia's pregnancy was marked by challenges. As a high-risk patient due to a genetic disorder, she experienced breakthrough bleeding, asthma attacks, and even seizures during her pregnancy. She recalls a particularly frightening episode that led to four days in the hospital. Throughout this ordeal, she would call her Community of Hope doctor, ensuring she absorbed every piece of information from the hospital doctors. "Sometimes I would just call so she could make me feel better," Talia fondly remembers.
After giving birth, Talia leaned on the team even more to help care for her son. “For the last 5 years, we have fought long and hard to keep Daelyn alive,” she says. “He came out early and had to stay in the NICU and from then on there has been many hospital stays and diagnoses.”
The Community of Hope's collaborative efforts with other local pediatric specialists ensured Daelyn received the care he needed, especially during surgeries and critical moments. Talia reflects on the impromptu conference calls, the reassurances, and the moments of encouragement that the Community of Hope team provided, not just as medical professionals, but as companions on the journey.
“When I say the team at Community of Hope has gone above and beyond for me, I mean, there is nothing I can do to repay them,” says Talia. “Some of the staff have brought me food when they came and checked on Daelyn.”
Today, Daelyn is a vibrant and lively 5-year-old, a testament to the trust, dedication, and compassion that Community of Hope has shown – in partnership with his mom who is a tireless advocate.
Talia's hope for the future is simple yet profound: for Community of Hope to expand its reach, to touch more lives with the same level of care and support she has experienced. Talia has referred her family to Community of Hope, including nieces, sisters, cousins, and even her godchildren, into the fold of the center's care.
“This is truly a resource center that does so much for the community,” says Talia. "They’re nothing short of a blessing.”