My 13-Year Riley Story
Hello my name is Chloe Madison Lacey, I would like to tell you a little about myself. I am a 13 year old girl who was born at 29 weeks old. I was taken to Riley Hospital and that is where my story really beings.
I was unable to breathe on my own, so they hooked me up to a machine that could breathe for me. I also had an infection in my blood that they were having trouble identifying, so I was placed on lots of medicines to help get rid of it. It was scary for my parents because I was hooked up to so many machines. They were unable to touch me for three weeks.
When I was 3 weeks old I finally weighed enough to have my first brain surgery. At 3 months old, I was still unable to eat on my own so they put in a g-tube (we called it a button.) It was a way of feeding me straight into my belly. At 6 months, I had a tracheotomy placed in my airway because I could no longer breathe on my own. I still have the scar from it, but we just consider it a battle wound. For the next few years I was in the hospital for breathing problems and small brain surgeries for several years.
Dr. Jodi Smith, my Riley neurosurgeon, had to place a pressure monitor inside the top of my brain. The funny part of it was I had this large plastic tube that stuck up out of my head, and I called it my “unicorn.”
It wasn't until I was around 6 years old that I had to have a full cranial decompression. That surgery was the hardest I have had. I continue to have small brain surgeries working on the shunt in my brain. I have sort of gotten used to it, but still don't like to have surgery. I also suffer from seizure disorder that we are trying to get under control.
Even though I have been through a lot, I am so grateful to be going through it at Riley. If it wasn't for the doctors here at Riley Hospital, I know I wouldn't be here today.
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