In late 2013, Miranda Mezzatesta and Jeff Dowling had good news to share with family and friends. There would be a baby brother or sister for five year old Caden.
Their happiness was suddenly marred by problems with the pregnancy.
Intitial testing stated that it was possible that their unborn child had Down Syndrome.
The young couple were soon relieved to find that the test for Down Syndrome was negative, only to be devastated by the news that baby could possibly be suffering from Trisomy 18, also known as Edwards syndrome, a condition which is caused by an error in cell division.
It was later determined that Trisome 18 was negative as well.
The actual problem was that the placental blood flow was not functioning normally.
At 23 weeks into her pregnancy, Miranda’s uterus ruptured. She was air ambulanced to BC Women’s and Children’s Hospital in Vancouver where doctors conducted a myriad of tests and placed Miranda on limited bed rest.
Her mother Shannon White made arrangements from work (Valley First Credit Union) and took off immediately to Vancouver. “Work has been very supportive,” says Shannon.
“The nurses in the Evergreen wing were amazing,” said Shannon. “They brought in a bed and blankets for me, they played music, and gave Miranda massage-they did everything possible to make her and I comfortable in a family environment.”
Miranda was later moved to Easter Seal House, and Shannon was shown how to monitor her daughter. All needs and arrangements were provided for, including that of bringing Jeff and Caden to stay as well.
At 27 weeks, Miranda wasn’t feeling well and that trip to the hospital resulted in an emergency Caesarean section.
Baby Grayson Alexander Dowling was born on February 24, 2014 and came out kicking, squeaking and breathing on his own. He weighed 1 lb. 3 1/2 oz and was 9.84 inches long.
“He’s had many challenges along the way,” has had to be intubated because of his struggles. He’s suffered from pneumonia and we’re hoping that within the next couple of weeks he’ll be extubated. (tubes removed) Shannon calls Grayson her Little Warrior Peanut. He is gaining weight, getting stronger – is quite alert, looking around and grasping mommy’s thumb.
When he hears Miranda singing to him, it doesn’t matter how ill he is, everything relaxes while he’s listening to her.
Baby Grayson, who is still at Children’s Hospital, is up to 3 lbs. now. Shannon says that she, “has no words to describe how grateful she is to B.C. Children’s Hospital, for what they have done and continue to do for her daughter Miranda, Jeff, Cayden and Grayson.”
Shannon is very pleased to announce that Grayson has been chosen as the feature baby for this years fundraising campaign challenge. She is a member of the team Envision Financial, Valley First and Enderby & District Financial partnered with BC Children’s Hospital Foundation to raise money to support BC Children’s Hospital.
Shannon is raising funds at a local level, accepting donations at Valley First, Cool Beans Coffee, Cooper’s Foods, Trisha Coyne Music Studio and at Billy’s Family Restaurant. Donations can also be made through her personal webpage at https://secure.bcchf.ca/SuperheroPages/main.cfm?Member=42987&Event=MMP
Shannon will present her cheque on Global TV during the Miracle Weekend on May 31 to June 1 and plans to assist on the phone lines as well.