This week's Giftgown's Hospital Experience Series features patient, Addie and her amazing caregiver and mother, Stephanie! Addie is an absolute shinning star currently is feeding tube dependent after being born pre mature and having short bowel syndrome. Stephanie and Addie have conquered multiple hospital stays, surgeries and their fair share of ups and downs. We're so happy to have Stephanie share her story and journey.
Name: Stephanie Durfee (daughter Adeline)
Location: Finksburg, MD
Social Media Handle(s):
Tell us More!
Giftgowns: Tell us about yourself and your little one!
Stephanie Durfee: I am a former director of education at a school for kids with autism and worked in special education for most of my life starting at 16 years of age. I left my job when Adeline came home from the NICU after being born at 26 weeks gestation. Adeline was born as a preemie and now has short bowel syndrome. She has had several hospital stays, 10 surgeries, and is TPN and feeding tube dependent. She is in early intervention for everything and has other medical complexities. She is an amazing toddler who is courageous and has pure joy coming out of every bit of her.
GG: Describe your little one in three words!
SD: Fighter, Corageous, Kind
GG: Has your child ever had a long term stay in the hospital? What was it like and how do you think Giftgowns could have made the situation better and more comfortable?
SD: My daughter has had several long term hospital stays – and I usually like her to be in her own clothes. The issue is that the teams cannot always access everything while she is wearing her own things. Giftgowns could have allowed her to be comfortable, cute, and allow team to access everything
GG: What are tips and tricks for families who have a family member currently going through treatment or staying in the hospital for an extended period of time?
SD: Try to create home as much as possible. Bring photos of family members, their own toys, blankets, pillows, books, and decorate for various holidays. If people ask how to help ask them to send a gift card to food delivery such as grub hub because you often tire of hospital food. I also always buy and bring groceries to cut down on eating out and because I do not like to leave the room.
GG: Do you have any special routines or mantras that help you cope or help with bad days?
SD: We walk the hallways if she's allowed. This gives me some exercise, social interaction, and gets me out of the room. We lap again and again at least twice a day. I also participate in any of the hospital activities.
More fun questions!
Addie’s favourite treat? She does not eat much by mouth but loves cheese!
Addie’s favourite sport? She is too young to play sports but she loves to swim
Addie’s favourite movie? They change all the time but right now it’s anything Thomas the Train
Super power you’d like to have? Take away all her pain
If you could get away anywhere in the world, where would you go? A national park- disappear and disconnect with nature.
What’s your favourite winter tradition? Cuddling in bed, watching movies, crock pot going with something cozy for dinner.
Thank you so much, Stephanie! We hope Addie loves her Giftgown!
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