an article written when Melissa was 16 months old....
sharing our position as written to SOFT USA when Melissa was 16 months old....
Melissa Helen is our fifth child born 28 April 1988 in Palmerston North, NZ.
Weighing 5lb 31/2 oz Trisomy 18 was confirmed in the first week and we were told there was little hope for her. Breast, tube and bottle fed for the first week, then just by bottle and at 15 days old we brought Melissa home to feel the love of her family. We spent the first four months in a daze with family and friends' support annd a lot of prayer. We battled to get every possible drop of milk into her. At four months old, she choked on medicine for a cold, resulting in pneumonia. In hospital Melissa was a very sick little girl and there was little improvement for a week and then her medication was changed and miraculously Melissa recovered. From that miracle we witnessed, we have since seen many others, enabling our precious daughter to go from strength to strength. The joy we were given with each new milestone far outweighs the difficult times we have. We live each day at a time and give praise for the time we have together. Meliss's little giggle and her smiles are our precious gifts. Now at sixteen months old, Melissa weighs just less than 15 lbs, is alert and responsive. Rolling both ways now makes her mobile and she can sit alone and stand at a couch though still falls as her arms lack strength to hold her up. There is a heart murmer, we are at present having tests done to determine the problem though so far her heart has not been a concern. Melissa goes to an early intervention clinic, which provides us with support and ideas for stimulation for her.
Her eyesight is good, we are still unsure of her hearing ability and her narrow nasal passages cause her to breathe noisily at times. The major disability would be her intolerance to light, which places many limits on every day life. Melissa has three solid meals a day and two bottles: all her food has been based on Isomil (since four months old), as she did not settle with other formulas. She is a placid child and has always managed to let us know if there is something wrong.
Melissa is touching many lives and she is indeed a gift from God.
This is how I shared our experience at that time - hoping it will provide information for other families