Tell us your story.
On June 19, 2007, I got a phone call that would change my
life as I knew it. When I got home, there were police cars,
fire trucks, and an ambulance in front of my house. My
husband met me at the front door and told me that I
couldn't go inside, that my nine month old daughter
Jessie was unresponsive and blue.
That is a feeling that I will never forget. The paramedics
told us that she had gone into a diabetic shock. Up to this
point, our daughter had been perfectly healthy, but diabetes
was prominent in both of our families. We were told that they
were going to airlift Jessie to Children's Hospital
After a very long night of doctors, nurses, and family, my
husband and I were called into the room to meet with the
Neurosurgeon that had been put in charge of Jessie's
case. He told us that she had had a stroke that concentrated
in the cerebellum, and that she had lost 80% of it. He told
us that the pressure was building and that he believed she
would need to have a decompression surgery. The resident and
the intern stated we should do it right away.
My husband asked Dr. Ojemann, the neurosurgeon, what his
gut instinct said. We were told his gut said to wait. So we
waited. Jessie crashed during the night. The next morning,
Dr. Ojemann came in and said we needed to get her into
surgery right away. Five hours later, we were called into a
little room where we found out that our little girl had made
it through the surgery, but she was still in a coma. He said
she should wake up in about five to seven days. Two days
later, she started waking up. Five days after surgery, we
were moved out of PICU. Everyone called her the miracle
We found out that no one expected her to live through that
first night. We were told that she could have problems with
everything from her ability to walk, to her fine motor skills
not developing due to her cerebellum dying. Three weeks after
being given less than a 1% chance of recovery, she came
What does Children's mean to you, your child and your family?
Children's Hospital and all of the
doctor's and nurses and support staff were our life
support in a time of our lives where our world crashed down
around us. If not for the care and knowledge that all of the
staff who worked on Jessie's case, our little
miracle would not be with us today. She has beaten the odds
that the stroke has thrown at her.
She is walking, starting to talk and she has her fine
motor skills, all of which we were told may not happen. The
follow up treatment she received was as top-notch as the
initial care she received. When she went in for her follow up
with Dr. Ojemann, he got to see first hand what his
miraculous work can do. She has come farther in the last
eight months than we were told she would over the course of
several years. Last month, at her hemoc and neurosurgery
appointments, she was discharged from hemoc, and only has to
see neurosurgery every six months.
The staff at Children's gave my daughter a second
chance at life, when the odds told us otherwise. For that,
myself, my husband, and Jessie's 2 older brothers,
will forever be thankful. Dr. Ojemann is someone that we will
always be indebted to, and one that we will never forget. At
her last visit, I asked Dr. Ojemann if they ever figured out
what caused the stroke in an otherwise healthy, normal baby.
He said we may never know, but it appears that she may just
have survived SIDS.