Tough Times Don't Last- Tough People Do
This September, we (Bella, Mike and baby Theo) will be participating in the fundraiser for SickKids GetLoud presented by PCL Construction. We are raising money for the development and construction of a new SickKids Hospital. Any amount you give today will help us reach our fundraising goal.
On October 4th, 2020 our son was born. My contractions began at 5:00 am that morning which brought on a mix of emotions. However, no book read or instagram page followed or advice given could prepare us for what was about to happen. Theo was born at 10:26 pm that night. However, this wasn't the typical in and out, 24 hour delivery and recovery hospital stay, that most mothers and fathers experience. As soon as Theo was born, we heard no cry, just a tiny breath gasping for air. At this time, we saw many doctors and nurses rushing into our room as they quickly put Theo on my chest for a second of Skin-to-Skin contact and then quickly rushed him to the NICU. We had spent the next 18 days of Theo's life in the NICU at Markham/Stouffville Hospital and SickKids Hospital. These hospitals had become our new home for the next 3 weeks as my we spent every second possible by our baby's bedside, separately most of the time due to Covid19 restrictions. After spending a week in the NICU at his birth hospital due to breathing issues, we were told that Theo was healthy and stable enough to go home the next day. It was the moment we had been waiting and hoping for, for what felt like forever. However, that night Theo began to have seizures. Once again, a rush of nurses and doctors had come into our section of the NICU, taking Theo to the reasses room as they began giving him medication to stop the seizures as they tried to understand the cause. We were then rushed and admitted to SickKids hospital, where we spent another week. After pages and pages of tests, Theo's MRI had finally revealed that he had damage to the right side of his brain due to a prenatal stroke which was caused by an unpreventable blood clot in my placenta during pregnancy. In the doctors words "this is something that just happens". We then waited for the high doses of seizure medication to wear off and watched our baby boy become a baby again. I remember each day saying to the nurses "No parent probably ever says this, but I miss hearing my baby cry." Finally after a couple days he became a baby again. The first day he began to open his eyes more. The next day or so he started to move different parts of his body. He then began eating from a feeding tube and then we finally got to hear our baby cry again. Once he was on a steady and maintainable dosage of the seizure medication, we were sent back to his birth hospital where we waited for Theo's full recovery. Finally after 18 days of sleepless nights, endless crying and constant worrying, we were finally able to take our little one home. Theo has been on seizure medication since then and will be reassessed at 4 months in hopes that he has grown out of this disorder.
During our stay at SickKids, I remember one nurse had said to me "when I was a baby I was very sick. I don't remember anything because I was a baby. But if you ask my mom she will tell you that she could never forget it". These 18 days will never be forgotten. They were the toughest days of our lives and hopefully the toughest days that Theo will ever have to go through. If it wasn't for the team at SickKids, their knowledge, training and technology, we would have never discovered the true cause of Theo's seizures and this devastating experience probably would have lasted much longer than 18 days.
This September, we as a family will be participating in the run/walk/ride for the Get Loud fundraiser to help create a new and improved SickKids Hospital. We are raising money for a better tomorrow for all of us.
Participant Name: Bella & Mike Palombo/Cianni
Participant ID: 1506635
Participation Type: Adult Participant (18+)
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