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Christopher’s Story

At twenty weeks gestation, our son Christopher was diagnosed with a severe right-sided diaphragmatic hernia.  He was born on July 12, 2012 at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), and he was in CHOP's Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit.  We have been amazed at the outpouring of love and encouragement we have received from friends, family, and strangers.  We trust that God will give us the strength and faith to get through these challenges.
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Written Apr 24, 2012 8:20pm

Our baby was diagnosed with a right-sided congenital diaphramatic hernia (CDH) on March 9th. Once the shock wore off, our first order of business was to find out who has a lot of experience in caring for these babies. It took about 2 weeks to focus in on CHOP. It was really neat to see all the arrows pointing in the same direction as we heard from many different sources about CHOP.

On April 6th, we had an all day consult that started at 8:30 and ended after 4:30. We had lots of tests and spoke with many people. They were able to answer our questions and concerns. We still had some decisions to make as a couple, but we felt like CHOP was the right place for Christopher to be born. I will be able to deliver him in the maternity ward inside the hospital. The maternity ward is just 3 years old. I will have Christopher in one room and they will pass him to a team of doctors waiting in the room next door - with all the equipment he will need.

I was completely unfamiliar with CDH before our ultrasound. Even when the DR. was explaining it to me, I was thinking that a hernia doesn't sound so bad. I didn't understand that a hernia could be a major deal for a developing baby.

If you would like to contact us, our e-mail address is Dajjn@verizon.net.

If you would like more information about congenital diaphramatic hernia, CHOP has an informative website.

There is also a series of videos describing the course of treatment starting with the diagnosis - for those who are really interested to know more information.

Thanks for coming to our blog. We are using this blog to keep our friends and family informed as we prepare to welcome Christopher.

Latest Journal Update

A new chapter!

 Written on December 23rd, 2013

  It has been so long since our last post.

  Christopher is in full toddler glory!  Walking, laughing, learning, talking, climbing, eating, drinking, and playing.
It was SO EXCITING seeing Christopher take his first steps.  I still am so happy to see him walking around our house.  
 
  Christopher had a GI visit this past Wednesday and his weight is in the 20th percentile and his height is in the 90th.  No more worries about his weight or growth!
  
  The new chapter in our lives began this Thursday December 19th when our daughter, Isabella Evelyn Riker was born (she is named after her great grandmothers).  We are enjoying getting to know this sweet little baby.  

  As we prepare for Christmas, I am amazed at how far Christopher has come in the last year.  We are full of joy to have another precious baby in our family.  And we are very blessed to have a wonderful community of family and friends encouraging us along the way.