$11,035 of $11,000
75 donations

This fundraiser ended on 06/16/12

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Please help offset/assist with medical/daily expenses to alleviate the financial burden.

*See updates towards the bottom of the page and the update tab on this page*

Abbie was born on July 20, 2011. Only one day after she came home, she was rushed to the ER by ambulance from dehydration because she had become too exhausted to eat. Over night her midsection turned grayish-blue and she was working way too hard to breath. In the same day she was transferred to three different hospitals and was diagnosed with several heart defects, an Interrupted Aortic Arch, Ventricular Sept Defect, and Atrial Septal Defect. She was later diagnosed with DiGeorge Syndrome, an immune system deficiency, severe Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), tracheamalasia, bronchomalasia, and an epigastric hernia.

Abbie has undergone two separate open heart surgeries. The first one was done when she was just a 15 days old. The second surgery was when she was not even five months old. Thankfully, she was released to go home from that hospital stay on Christmas day! Abbie has had six NJ feeding tubes (feeding tube through the nose extending down to her instestines) placed since she was born due to clogging, holes, and Abbie just pulling it out. She is now awaiting a surgery to have a G-tube placed (a feeding tube through to the stomach) because the GERD is so severe. With being in the hospital for about half of her life she has been set back physically. She is currently 6 months old and is now beginning to hold her head up on her own. She cannot yet roll-over or sit up by herself. Abbie has been enrolled with a state program called Early Intervention. She is now setup for physical therapy and will start therapy for feedings after her G-tube is placed. Abbie does not know how to eat by mouth because she has been on the feeding tube since a few days after her first surgery. In addition, the severe retching she suffers from has caused her to have a food aversion along with the GERD causing any food in her stomach to come up. The G-tube surgery with a funduplication will hopefully help correct these issues.

With the many hospital stays, we have missed out on too many paid days of work to count. Christine has been only able to work part time because of the numerous hospital stays and the difficulty of finding an affordable caregiver willing and able to care for a baby with special needs and health problems. Adding to this, Abbie cannot be around other kids or babies because of her immune system. Many caregivers prefer to watch more than one child at once. Luckily, each of our moms are able to come over one day per week so that Christine can work. With all of the bills continuing to pile up and the smaller income to compare, we are having trouble keeping up. We have gone through the last of our savings and have used up government student loan money originally obtained to put Christine through college to make up for all of the missed work, traveling expenses, prescriptions, and medical co-pays for doctor appointments and visits to the ER.

Abbie still has many more doctors appointments to make and specialists to see as she grows up. DiGeorge Syndrome is a complex disorder that affects many different body systems and problems may not be apparent until later. Right now all that we know of is her heart defects, immune deficiency, and sensitive GI tract. However DiGeorge kids have many different problems relating most commonly to heart defects, immune system deficiencies, learning and development disabilities, behavioral problems, cleft palates, GI issues, calcium deficiencies, and abnormal development of the spine.

We have been fortunate enough to have such great family and friends to lend support thus far. We are so very grateful for the wonderful friends and family we have. Most of all the same as every parent, we want our child to be as happy as she can and lead the best life that she can. For Abbie to have this chance, she needs care from the most knowledgeable doctors and therapists we can find.

We will be utmost thankful if you would contribute to relieving some of the financial strain this has suddenly imposed on us. If you feel more comfortable sending a check instead of the credit/debit card transaction through this website, please make it to James Valdes, 627 Osbron Street, Plano, IL 60545.

Update #1
Our family would like to give a special thanks to Joe & Jeni Ford for being one of the first donors!

Abbie has returned home from hopefully her last surgery. We are waiting to see what happens within the next month with her symptoms. Since before it took about 3 weeks after her open heart surgery for her to continue with the symptoms she was previously suffering from. There was hope her last open heart surgery would help improve those, but unfortunately it did not. In another week from now we should be able to continue exercises to get her working on sitting up and getting her a little more stable with holding her head up. Abbie has been showing off her little cheeks with all the smiles she gives away.

Thank you all for taking the time to look at our site. As you may now know, with Abbie having to make several trips (around a dozen) to the hospital that is an hour and a half away from our home and many overnight stays we have missed out on several paid days of work. Even to this day with several doctors visits, a steady work week is tough to keep. With the medical bills and special babysitting bills, we have been put in this unpredictable situation since only very shortly after Abbie was born we learned about some of her conditions. Although it is very difficult for us to ask our friends and family for so much help we have been reminded there are so many people that would love to help out. Please continue to watch your email and visit our site for updates on different ways to help out.

If you are unable to donate, please help by reposting our link to help get our story out. We would be greatly appreciate it.

Update #2
Abbie has started doing the retching (dry heaving) again. Her nutritionist has changed her feeding scheduled which has decreased the amounts on times she is retching. Doctors are still looking into why she continues to retch. With the new g-tube in place it is nice to be able to see Abbie's face. We continue to work with Abbie on getting her to sit up on her own. With a new babysitter starting we are hopeful this sitter will actually work with Abbie on doing exercises to help bring her physically where she needs to be.

We would like to thank all of you for the recent donations. James co-workers at Alarm Detection Systems has offered to organize a Benefit for Abbie to also help out. The time is set for June 9, 2012 @ 2:00pm at the Blackberry Trails Pavilion in the Lakewood Creek Subdivision in Montgomery, IL. There is a $25.00 entry for the walk/run that will go towards the Benefit for Abbie. There will also be a bake sale, and raffle. The doctor has cleared Abbie to be able to make it to the event. We will be walking little miss Abigail in the stroller. Please come join us in the days activities.

There will be a flyer that should be made shortly. They are looking for volunteers to help the day of to run the activities. Email James at for info on how to help.

A special thanks for being a matching donor to Vincent & Dawn Valdes. Thank everyone that was able to help match those funds so quickly!

We have added some new photos and videos, don't forget to take a look! The new ones are not in order so look closely.
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