Shannon's Story

By Shannon

Tell us your story.

Twenty seven years ago I was born with a double ureter, running from one of my kidneys to my bladder. I had to take two different medications a day in order to not get a kidney or bladder infection. At first, I was treated by doctors at an area hospital and the procedural experiences were terrifying. I came to Children's in the early 80's to get specialized treatment for the condition by Dr. Mark Burns.

In 1988 when I was eight, Dr. Burns operated on the double ureter to disable it from functioning. In my child's mind I was cured and I thought my visits to Children's were over with. I was wrong.

In February of 1991 I was diagnosed with type I diabetes and rushed to Children's Hospital ER late at night. I felt, as silly as it sounds, I was home again, but I was scared. My experience with my doctor, Dr. Patrick Mahoney, the nurses, and the excellent care I received during my week long stay for my diabetes has stayed with me for the past 16 years. Not only is my diabetes in excellent control, but my favorite nurse Barbara, who also had diabetes, has inspired me to want to become a nurse to this day. I also received a visit from Dr. Burns during my hospitalization as well! He had remembered me from 3 years earlier.

I continued my care in Endocrinology for my diabetes until I was too old to be seen at Children's. It was hard to leave!

What does Children's mean to you, your child and your family?

Children's Hospital will always hold a special place in my heart. I have a lot of good memories from Children's, from walking in and seeing the friendly giraffe, to my caring doctors, getting a stuffed animal from the gift shop when I had a procedure done, feeling grown up while staying alone overnight with my nurses, to getting over my fear of riding elevators, visiting the babies in the nursery, and swimming in the therapy pool with my sister. I will never forget my experiences at Children's.

I believe if my care had not been excellent, my experience not warm and memorable, I would not have had the base, the starting point for the outlook on life I have now concerning my health. I owe so much to Dr. Mark Burns and Dr. Patrick Mahoney and the nurses who have cared for me and inspired me the several years I was treated at Children's.