Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

A Family adapts to new challenges of a child with Down SyndromeSubmitted: 11/13/2013
Story By Melissa Constanzer


GLEASON - We all want perfect, healthy, and happy babies but sometimes things don't go as perfectly as planned. One Gleason woman and her family learned how to accept this.

"The second I looked at the picture, I knew he had Down Syndrome," said Shannon Staskiewicz.

Shannon Staskiewicz couldn't lose that thought when she first saw her new baby boy.

"I was depressed, I was angry, I was grieving, you know, I expected to have this perfect little boy. And while he is perfect in his own way, it took a long time to make that connection. When I looked at him, all I saw was Down Syndrome, I didn't see Hunter," says Shannon.

She couldn't prepare for this. So she turned to other mothers online for help.

"I, you know, connected with a number of mom's on face book and they were so helpful. You know, just to say, that's normal, you know, it's normal to be sad, it's normal to be angry, but now you need to accept him for who he is," said Shannon.

But the family couldn't afford for the anger to last long. Hunter needed lots of care and attention.

"About twenty-five to forty percent of all Down Syndrome babies have some form of cardiac malformation," said Dr. Dennis McFadden, Shannon's OB/GYN.

Hunter had a hole in his heart that healed on its own. But he was born with breathing issues. His lungs aren't as strong as they should be.

"With Hunter, putting him in daycare doesn't work well. He doesn't have a very good immune system...Three days, he would be home sick," says Staskiewicz.

Shannon had to quit her job to take care of Hunter. It put extra stress on her family but she believes it was worth it. The only difference from her other children is that Hunter grows and learns at a slower rate.

"So it's just that longer extended timeline. Otherwise he's stubborn, he's sweet, he is, you know, can get into things that he's not supposed to. We're just getting ready to install a baby gate because now with him being more mobile, he's into everything," stated Shannon.

"We're not going to let the fact that he has Down Syndrome hold him down, or let anything get in his way because he can do everything anybody else can do," says Shannon.

Shannon has the same dreams and goals for Hunter as her other two children. But the road will undoubtedly be longer and tougher.

"I think it's very important to, have as much warning as you can from the patient standpoint. This can be a very shocking experience that can really be emotionally challenging at the time of birth," says Dr. McFadden.

"It's okay to, you know, be angry and he is worth it. He is absolutely, 100 percent worth every second," said Shannon.

If you want to learn more about Shannon's story, check out the Hello, Hunter Facebook page.

Related Weblinks:
Hello, Hunter - The Facebook Page

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

CRANDON - People know John Muir as Father of the National Parks and an early pioneer of wilderness preservation.
 
The Wisconsin Historical Society is now celebrating his memory with a free traveling exhibit, currently on display at the Crandon Public Library.

+ Read More

Play Video

LAC DU FLAMBEAU - With spring finally here, you'll probably start noticing more pests around the house.

That's why you'll want to start pest-proofing before temps get even warmer.

+ Read More

MADISON - Federal authorities say an Illinois woman has died after being shot during an apparent drive-by shooting along a Wisconsin interstate while she was traveling home with her husband and children.

+ Read More

Play Video

ONEIDA COUNTY - Parents don't always stay together or get married when they have a baby. But currently, there aren't many co-parenting educational options available in Oneida County.

That's why the UW-Extension Oneida County office is beginning to offer a class called Parents Forever.

+ Read More

WAUSAU - Authorities have released the name of a Wausau police officer who fatally shot a suspect in a domestic disturbance last weekend.

The Wausau Police Department identifies the officer who shot the suspect as James Martin. Martin became a police officer in January 2015 after working as a Wausau community service officer.

+ Read More

Play Video

EAGLE RIVER - After four decades in the business, you might think Leo and Mary Kay Horant would be leaning toward retirement. But Leo would tell you his greenhouse is his vacation spot.

"This is my happy place," Horant said Tuesday morning.  "I'll work 12 hours a day."

Never was that more apparent than eight months ago.  Fire ripped through the Eagle River couple's home and garden center on Highway 70 August 17, 2015.  The Horants' "Gardener's Gate" greenhouse near Pick 'n Save became something of a lifeboat.

+ Read More

Play Video

ASHLAND - U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Weston) won his congressional seat in 2010, and hasn't had a particularly tight race in any of his runs for re-elections.

His victories over Democrats Julie Lassa, Pat Krietlow, and Kelly Westlund were all fairly comfortable.

But three northcentral Wisconsin Democrats hope to end that streak.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here