Tuesday, June 30, 2015

June 30 - Dear Nicholas Sparks (Guest Blogger Jamie-Lane Campbell)

My name is Jamie-Lane Campbell. I am sixteen years old and going into grade eleven in September. My boyfriend is Troy Noseworthy; he is nineteen years old and working full-time at our local mill. We are from a small town called Fort Nelson, British Columbia. There are only about 5,000 people that live here, so when a teenager becomes pregnant, everyone knows about it.

We found out I was pregnant, and I thought my world was over. My parents were EXTREMELY angry with me and Troy because we were so young and not ready to be parents. I, personally, do not believe in abortion, so we kept the baby. I got an ultrasound done, and my doctor called me that night and informed me there was something wrong in the ultrasound. We don't have a great hospital here, so he sent me to Edmonton to the Royal Alexandra Hospital to get a better ultrasound done there.

The same day I had my ultrasound in Edmonton, the doctor informed me my baby had a diaphragmatic hernia. I was terrified. It was bad enough being 16 years old and pregnant, but now there was something seriously wrong with my baby. My parents went to Edmonton with me for support. The neonatalogists explained what could happen with the baby, all the complications there could be, and what might happen when it was born.

I came home to Fort Nelson, but had to return to Edmonton once a month for check-ups and ultrasounds. For my last month of pregnancy, the doctors wanted me in Edmonton to deliver, so I had to finish school via fax for the last two months of school. On June 4, 2002, I went to the hospital to be induced because the doctor said the baby was losing weight. At 3:23 a.m. on June 5, 2002, I delivered a baby boy by a C-section. He was 201/2 inches long and weighed 7 lbs. 10 oz.

He was on the ventilator for the first three weeks of his life, the oscillator for the first five days. The hole was on the left side of his diaphragm, so his heart was being squished along with his lungs. His stomach and intestines were in his chest cavity. They transferred him to the University of Alberta Hospital when he was a week old. He had his surgery when he was about two weeks old, but they could not close the incision right away because he had retained so much fluid that he swelled up like a balloon. Nine days later they closed the incision. He was in the NICU for the first month and a half of his life before he was transferred to a pediatric ward.

He will be three months old on August 5th, and he is still in the hospital, but doing well. He is now 9 lbs. 14oz., and still getting bigger. The flap over the bottom of his esophagus did not form, so he cannot eat without throwing up. They inserted two tubes into his abdomen. One tube goes into his stomach to drain, preventing him from throwing up bile, the other bypasses the stomach and goes into the first part of his small intestine to feed him-- it's called a J-tube. When he gets bigger, they will do another surgery where they pull part of his stomach across the bottom of his esophagus and make a flap so he can eat orally.

Tyrell is the joy of my life, and even though he has problems, he is still my son. Troy and I are still together, and we're planning to move in together when I graduate. Ty is the most important thing to me, I would not give him up for the world. I was terrified when the doctors explained the ECMO machine, and all the problems he could have when he was born. I just kept my head up and told myself, "This is my baby; he will be strong when he's born, and I know he's going to make it."

Tyrell's mom, Jamie-Lane Campbell (Canada)

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