KRYSTAL WAITS TO CUDDLE HER BABY
By ANN-MARIE MAY
KRYSTAL Donovan dreams of the day when she can wrap her arms around her baby son, Dallas, and hold him for as long as she likes.
But for now all she can do is watch and softly touch him, waiting until that happy day comes.
Born on Good Friday at Coffs Harbour Health Campus, Dallas arrived into the world with many complications ? an underdeveloped rib cage, abnormal airways and an underdeveloped chin.
He was airlifted immediately to Sydney Children's Hospital, where he remains, hooked up to a number of machines.
There has been no opportunity for Krystal to form a bond with her son, robbed of her right to experience what most mothers take for granted ? feeding him, giving him a bath and putting him to sleep.
She would give anything to be woken up at 3am by his screaming.
But she is holding on tight to her dream as she spends every day by his side, staying in parent and carer accommodation at the hospital. Her family is proud of the way Krystal has remained strong, but admit it gets tougher every day.
The doctors haven't been able to clearly diagnose Dallas's condition but say it is closely related to Goldenhar Syndrome. There is no known treatment.
Krystal and her family don't know what's to come, except that Dallas will have to be in hospital for a very long time ? at least two years, according to doctors.
The family have been told that Coffs Harbour Health Campus isn't equipped to care long-term for someone like Dallas, which means he will have to stay in Sydney.
Apart from the emotional strain, there is also the financial drain with the money to keep Krystal by her son's side quickly disappearing. n The Donovan family and the Advocate are examining ways the Coffs Coast community may be able to help Krystal and Dallas. Read Saturday's paper for details.