“Our story with Grant starts like most others. All was going great with the pregnancy. We had regular checkups, everything was measuring along well, and Grant was developing just how he should. Then, when Hilary was 31 weeks pregnant, the doctors decided to admit her on bed rest in the hospital. They told us to be ready for her to spend quite a bit of time there, as they still had plans of Grant making it full term. I went home to get things to decorate her room to make it feel more “homely”, and by the time I had made it back, the doctors had changed their mind. Grant was coming, and he was coming soon.” -Elliott MacIsaac
Happy Mother’s Day! During these unprecedented times, our moms deserve an extra squeeze for keeping their kids safe and healthy while quarantined. Hilary Macisaac is one of our “miracle moms” to children Davis, Ellie and Grant. Their family typically enjoys making memories together by traveling. Even if it is a quick trip to watch the Auburn Tigers play or to the family favorite, Disney World. These days, they have been laying low as their third born, Grant, is in the high-risk category for the virus.
Grant MacIsaac is currently 6 years old, an avid fan of basketball and movies such a Toy Story and Cars. He can be seen playing baseball and football with his brother and sister in the front yard or breaking it down in our silent disco during the Main Event celebration. Getting to this point, however, was nothing short of a miracle. When he was born, Grant spent 43 days
in the NICU after having emergency surgery for a collapsed lung. Grant’s father, Elliott, describes the moments after learning this delivery was going to go a bit differently than usual.
“They wanted to try and hold him off for 48 more hours as they gave him two betamethasone shots to help get his lungs ready. The doctors prepared us for everything; however, we were all very optimistic as Grant had been developing ahead of schedule as it was. 48 hours and two shots later, Hilary was in the operating room for a C-Section and it was time to meet Grant.
When the doctors pulled him out, he was screaming, crying, and generally just mad to be there. The crying was, in our opinion, an amazing sign. We had heard so many stories about babies being born early and not crying due to their lungs not being fully developed, and we naturally assumed that this was a great sign. At this point, this delivery was exactly like our other two children, who both were very healthy babies and both born full term. The doctors let us take a quick look, I was able to hold him for a very brief moment, and then they whisked him away to the NICU to examine him. Within a few hours he was on a CPAP machine and in less than 12 hours he was moved to a ventilator. The doctors assured us that this was OK and that his lungs just needed some time to develop. At this point, we were still unable to see him. 24 hours later, the doctor came into our room and sat down. Hilary and my heart stopped. It’s never good news when the doctor has to sit down.
He informed us that Grant’s lung collapsed and they had to perform emergency surgery on him. They were able to repair it and he was going to be OK; however, it was quite dicey at the time and also meant he was going to be in the NICU for a lot longer than we had originally anticipated. He ended up being on the ventilator for 21 days. If that wasn’t enough for the poor baby, he also contracted two separate infections, leading to 21 days of antibiotics that were eventually given to him through his belly button. After 43 days in the NICU, Grant was finally able to come home. Everyone at the NICU, from the nurses to the doctors, all the way to the janitors, was amazing. Everything they did for our family can’t be explained in words. From putting up with our frustrations to dealing with questions from siblings and grandparents, to convincing us to bring Grant’s older brother and sister to see him even when he was covered from head to toe in wires was a blessing to us.
Since coming home, the continued treatment that Grant has received from the multitude of specialists from Children’s Hospital of Alabama has also been amazing. Grant has needed some help developing certain things that would come normally to a full-term baby. He has needed help with occupational, speech, and physical therapy due to him being a preemie and being on the ventilator for so long. With all their help Grant is getting stronger and developing faster each day.”
Today, Grant’s biggest struggle is said to be “keeping up with his older siblings” thanks to the amazing work from the Children’s Hospital of Alabama. Not to mention the difficult choice of whether he wants to be an Auburn football, basketball, or baseball player when he grows up. This past year at Main Event, Grant thoroughly enjoyed playing tag and dancing with the “big kids”.
Through Auburn University Dance Marathon’s service to The Children’s Hospital at Piedmont Columbus Regional, our goal is to ensure every mom and family never has to worry about receiving treatment for their child during scary moments like these.
“What AUDM is doing is nothing short of miracle work. The amount of money that has been raised over the years to support neonatal units is amazing –but what is more amazing is the passion in which the students take in this organization. Taking time out of their busy schedules (and social schedules) to dedicate to the families and this organization is incredible. We feel truly blessed to be a part of this amazing organization.” – The MacIsaac Family
Thank you to the MacIsaac’s for choosing to share their story today and helping spread awareness for our local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, The Children’s Hospital at Piedmont Columbus Regional. Finally, a big thank you and Happy Mother’s Day to all the Miracle Moms out there. You got this.
if you would like to donate to support our CMN Hospital. Donations stay local to fund critical treatments, healthcare services, pediatric medical equipment, and charitable care.
if you would like to register for our “Main Event” celebration and open your own fundraising page for the kids.
If you are interested in becoming one of our Miracle Families, please email our current Director of CMNH Relations, Libba Wright (email@example.com).