Plainfield, IL, March 24, 2010 --(PR.com
)-- Annie and her family were presented with many logos to choose from, but Annie with her love of fairies, butterflies and anything pink or purple - had the say so on the final decision. Here is her story - quite an inspiration at five years old.
Anlynn Grace Dykstra
On November 29, 2004, Annie, entered this world 10 weeks early at 2 lbs, 14 oz. At just 15 inches in length, her ankles were small enough to slip a wedding band over. Annie began her journey at the Genesis East NICU where she was weaned off the ventilator in only 12 hours. From there, her roller coaster ups and downs were constantly monitored and her daily progress was intensely scrutinized. Annie was diagnosed with a Grade III, IVH... meaning that she had a pretty severe bleed on the brain, common in premature infants. After several days of monitoring, Annie's bleed on the brain was severe enough to warrant a transfer to University of Iowa in Iowa City with the intent of surgically inserting a shunt to relieve pressure on her tiny brain. On December 15, 2004 Annie was transported by ambulance to Iowa City.
Upon arrival, the team of doctors and neurosurgeons determined that the best treatment would be the "wait and see' approach to limit any types of invasive procedures on such a small infant... she hadn't even reached the 3 lb mark yet. Remarkably, this approach worked... after 3 additional weeks in Iowa City, Annie's bleed on the brain began resolving on its own without surgical intervention. Annie was transported back to Genesis East on January 4, 2005 to finish the last stretch in her NICU journey... eating around the clock on her own. On January 24, 2005, Annie was released from Genesis and came Home after a total hospital stay of 56 days. Annie then weighed a little over 5 lbs... and was just short of her original due date of February 7, 2005.
Today, Annie is a energetic and fun loving little toddler at 5 years old. She loves to sing and play with her big brother, Mason. Annie is a chatterbox and loves to play with her babies. As a result of her premature birth, Annie has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy. She has high muscle tone in her legs, causing her to constantly be on her tip-toes. With the help of weekly physical therapy, Annie learned to walk with the assistance of a reverse walker and ankle braces. Annie underwent a major surgery in March 2008 which has enabled her to walk independently. This determined little girl is our miracle and she has a true zest for life.
Each year, more than 508,000 babies (1 in 8) are born too soon, some so small they can fit in the palm of a hand. Many of these babies must fight just to survive; others must struggle with lifelong health problems. No one knows the causes of nearly half of all premature births, and no one is working harder than the March of Dimes to find out. Thank you for helping to make stories like Annie's possible.
Visit Annie's page at http://www.webdesigngivingback.com/anlynn.html to learn more about giving back through March of Dimes. Thank you for your time. And thank you, Annie and her family, for all that you do.