Our son was born with a heart disorder which required open heart surgery. We were told that this type of surgery must be performed between five and seven months of age. Josh needed to be at least ten lbs. at the time of surgery. With much trepidation we fed him, anxiously counting the ounces he was consuming. We thankfully reached our goal of ten lbs .very close to the date of the scheduled surgery. We were assured by our cardiologist that the required surgical procedure was a simple straight forward one that has been performed many times without resulting complications. So we continued counting the ounces of formula, and continued counting the days leading up to surgery.
The surgery took about 6 hours, and finally my son's chest was sewn closed and he was brought into the CCU for recovery and monitoring. All went well and the discharge papers were prepared. Upon pulling out his chest drainage tubes, Josh went into cardiac arrest which lasted for 37 minutes. After 37 minutes without oxygen and then being attached to the ECMO machine for three days, well what should we say, he survived the ordeal, however our child was functioning very differently than before.
Of the many disabilities Josh now faces, one is that he can no longer feed by mouth. This presents enormous challenges. One of the trivialities of this disability is his limited clothing options. I was determined that my disabled son would be dressed just as beautifully as his siblings . For healthy children the clothing options are limitless. Styles, colors, seasons, you name it , it's out there. But for children with disabilities, the options are very limiting. Firstly, a basic, comfortable undershirt in any style was what I was seeking. I couldn't find anything so I created my own. I bought two light blue undershirts and proceeded to create what was needed. I found a cooperative seamstress and explained what needed to be done. We cut a hole where the mickey button is placed, and sewed a light blue patch to serve as a flap to cover the hole. We attached snaps , and we got a practical undershirt.
I was not pleased with the finished product. I felt that Josh has enough to contend with, at the very least he should be dressed nicely. I put lots of time and effort into the design, and finally I was pleased with my creation.
My son's therapists and doctors commented on the undershirts and seemed to know many other children who would benefit from these undershirts as well. And so a company was born.