Wednesday, August 26, 2015

August 26 - Dear Nicholas Sparks (Guest Bloggers Wayne & Sabrina Durrigan)

Dear Mr. Sparks,

When I was 8 months pregnant they discovered through an ultrasound that our baby had a hole in his diaphragm. The doctors gave us a 15% chance of survival. I had an ultrasound once a week and I was put on the heart monitor too. They did an amniocentesis, but really did not have enough time for all the results to come in. Then 5 days after my due date (November 1, 1989) our son Jeffery was born. He weighed 8 lbs. 2 oz. and 21 ½ inches long. He was born at Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla, NY. I could not see him, because they had to take him right away. In all my ultrasounds they told us that his heart was on the wrong side. Well, when he was born, they yelled out his heart is on the right side, what a relief!!! Jeffery was operated on the following morning and did well; on his 8th day things did not look so good. His bowels were backing up, so they operated again on day 9. Thank God he pulled through. Jeffery was on the respirator for 3 weeks. They told us Jeffery has 1 full right lung and a small left lung, since most of his body parts were up in his chest when he was born, there was no room for his left lung to grow. Once he was off the respirator he turned blue a couple of times. They had a pulmonologist give him treatments. Jeffery was in the neo-natal unit for 30 days. Then he graduated to an intermediate unit for 3 days. Then he came home.

Jeffery was home not even two weeks, when his stomach broke the repair. The doctors decided that Jeffery should get strong before they operate again. He was too weak, so they monitored him. We understood that Jeffery needed to get strong, but then on the other hand it hindered him from being active. He could not crawl, because every time he tried he was in pain. When Jeffery was 1 year old and 5 days they operated. This time they put gortex in him and they had to make a few more repairs. They also discovered he had a hole in his pericardium. The day after his surgery, Jeffery crawled for the first time, what a sight!!!

At 2 years old Jeffery started having problems with his esophagus. He had reflux problems. They put him on medicine, then at 3 years old he had to have an endoscopy. At 4 years old he had a hydrocele, so they operated again. Then at 4 he had another endoscopy and he stayed on medication for his reflux for 2 years.

Jeffery has been on and off medications for his reflux for most of his life. He also uses a nebulizer when he gets colds. At 9 years old he had another endoscopy and another operation to correct cartilage he had protruding out of an area below his chest.

Jeffery has played baseball, basketball and soccer. He does have learning disabilities but he tries real hard at whatever he does. He will be 11 years old November 1, 2000 and we are very proud of him. He has a sister Alyssa who is 5 years old and born very healthy. Alyssa adores her brother. Jeffery also has a very special surgeon who has been in his life since before birth. He now sees Jeffery once a year.

Jeffery's parents, Wayne & Sabrina Durrigan (Connecticut)

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