August 20th, 2011 life as our family of eight knew it drastically changed. Our son, Judah Forrest James was 5 weeks old. His first five weeks of life had been “normal.” He was full term when born. I had a great pregnancy and beautiful birth. However, this particular day we thought Judah had the stomach flu. He had thrown up a few times. By the time our other children went to bed Judah seemed very lethargic. We tried to wake him up to eat….to no avail. He was “too sleepy.” After a call to our midwife for advice we began packing our things to head out to the hospital. I was in the kitchen finding items for the diaper bag. Chad was in our bedroom changing Judah’s diaper. I suddenly heard him screaming, “JUDAH!!!!! JUDAH!!! Come on, buddy!!! Krista!! CALL 911!!!!” ….Judah had a seizure and stopped breathing…. A 911 call, transport to Lakeland Regional Hospital, whirlwind of tests, another transport to Tampa General Hospital, and surgery to place a temporary shunt in Judah’s brain… This was clearly not the stomach flu…
Judah suffered two brain hemorrhages believed to have been caused by Late Onset Hemorrhagic Disease of the Newborn…a rare vitamin K deficiency. Judah wasn’t expected to live. We were told that if he did live he’d most likely be brain-dead, blind and deaf. But our Judah is alive!!! He was in the hospital for 10 days – a miracle! He later returned to the hospital at 3 months of age for one more surgery. Judah had developed hydrocephalus and needed a permanent shunt placed in his brain to drain into his abdomen.
(For more of this story visit https://judahsjourney.com/2013/01/08/back-to-the-beginning/ )
Since that time our days have been filled pursuing every therapy and treatment we can find to help our little boy. He currently has physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and vision therapy each week. We have two 90-minute sessions in the hyperbaric oxygen chamber each day. He also sees a chiropractor, Anat Baniel therapist and 7 specialists quite regularly. Judah is 18 months old but his development is significantly delayed. Last year at this time Judah was paralyzed on his left side, had little muscle tone or strength in his core, and was unable to see anything except for light. He makes progress every week and we are so thankful! He is able to move his left side and his left hand is grasping objects. He is babbling more and has the cutest little voice. He’s interacting with us, reaching for our faces, and initiating play. Eating is getting easier. His vision is returning and he’s able to see black and white images. And he’s very close to being able to sit up on his own.
Thank you for being a part of Judah’s journey to his complete healing.