|Parents||Pat and Chris Bechtler|
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Jeffery was born in Septenber of 1987 at a northern Michigan hospital. I had a repeat c- section. Jeffery weighted in at 4lbs.12oz. I had rooming in and three days after he was born they came in and took him to the NICU. I was very lost. We had the worst doctor and could get no info from him just that something was wrong. Jeffery had no suck swallow we were told. They put a tube down his nose to feed him and put him under lights for jaundice. The doctor would order tests without telling us. I remember one time we went for a cup of coffee and came back to find he had been sent for a spinal tap without our knowledge. We had a doctor from the old school who told us he would do what test he wanted without telling us that he didn’t have time to inform us of his decisions. He also told us there were "places" for children like him. Two weeks later they finally transferred him to Detroit Children’s Hospital. Upon arriving they gave Jeffery a blood transfusion for severe anemia and informed us he had a heart murmur which his doctor had found at the other hospital and neglected to tell us. The medical staff here were great. They found he had agensis of the corpus collosum and ran chromosome studies which showed an extra piece on ten. Jeffery was still being fed by tube. We worked on oral feedings and were thrilled when we got 4ccs down him at a time. It was determined that he could not handle formula so they put him on predigested formula at thirty dollars a can. We finally got to take him home at 6 weeks. He went back in almost immediately for RSV and then again and again. At 2 months he had a hernia so his first surgery. During this time feeding was a problem. Bowel movements were a problem. He would vomit so hard it would hit the wall but the stupid doctor told me he was just spitting up. Jeffery was my third child like I didn’t know what spit up was. He would have trouble breathing and turn blue.We could never sleep and one of us had to sit by him constantly. We went home for xmas to Va. On xmas eve Jeffery started vomiting blood. I freaked out. My hubby bless his soul took over. Jeffery couldn’t breathe so he gave him CPR until the medics arrived. He was rushed to the hospital. They said tears in the throat were responsible for the blood. Got him healthy and they were to release him the next day so they told us to go home and get a good nights rest. The next morning my hubby dropped me at the door and went to park the car. I walked to Jeffrey’s bed and it was covered with blood and no Jeffery I started screaming and hubby was just leaving the elevator and heard me. He came running. So did the nurses. They had moved Jeffery cus he had started throwing up blood again. He was fine they assured me. That was the only time we had ever left Jeffery without one of us there and it was the last time.He was in pretty bad shape by this point and was touch and go when they finally found the problem.Jeffery had a membrane blocking the intestines. He was not stable enough for the surgery he needed to save his life as his heart kept stopping. We were told he only had hours to live. I went to the chapel and asked God not to make him better but to do what he needed to do because I didn’t think I could take anymore. Don’t ask me what happened in that chapel but when I left I knew Jeffery would be fine. When I went back up and told my hubby and the doctors they all thought I had cracked up. Within hours Jeffery was upgraded to stable and had his surgery which he went through with flying colors. Jeffery still had alot of problems gaining weight and was constantly in the hospital for infections. They told us he would never do anything. Next they found when he had reflux at two. He went through a fundoplication with g tube placement. Luckily he could still eat by mouth so the g tube was removed after 2 months. He was then put on thyroid medicine at 5 and that changed our lives. He started gaining weight and stayed out of the hospital. Jeffery in now 13 and weights in at 41lbs. Can’t get a height on him due to problems with his hips which will be fixed next month. He is now doing more than they ever expected and is spoiled rotten. He is still nonverbal. He is close to walking. He does not seem to feel pain as he laughs when he is hurt. He does not cry. Jeffery has two brothers and one sister who spoil him rotten. They fight over who will get him when something happens to us. We have been in the school districts and medical environment so if anyone out there needs help with any info just email us and we will help you. God bless all these wonderful children who have changed our lives.
Mar 1, 2001
Mar 1, 2001
Pat and Chris Bechtler