Faris’ Story

Faris was born in July 2009. He came into this world a week overdue after a fairly normal pregnancy. Straight after Faris Driverbirth he was whisked away to NICU. We had been unaware that Faris had a Congenital Heart Condition and later that day he was diagnosed with Transposition of the Great Arteries. He had a balloon septostomy on day one.

We named him Faris as it meant “Strong” and he needed strength to get through what he had to face.  Life became a whirlwind of hospitals, doctors, expressing milk, trying to get our heads around what was happening and trying to be there for our other children (Jessie nearly 2 years  and Zara 4 years) while one of us remained constantly beside his cot. It was an extremely emotional time.

He stayed at The Mercy Hospital for Women for the first three days before being transferred to The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne. There he underwent open heart surgery on Day 4 with an Arterial Switch Procedure performed by Prof Yves d’Udekem Days felt like weeks as we watched his tiny body get stronger. He was a fighter and overcame a collapsed lung and a number of other setbacks. We were lucky – he came through with an amazing outcome and the strength to recover.

We transferred back to The Mercy for a few days to establish his feeding patterns before taking him home at 14 days old. How scary it was to be home without the help of medical staff and to feel totally responsible for him and his health. We had a few very long discussions, late at night, with The Mercy doctors about things that were concerning us.

Faris Driver 2At  6 months old, things were just starting to settle down and we were feeling we could get out and do a bit more as a family when Faris’s Dad had a terrible accident and passed away suddenly. Faris has grown up without the many influences that his Dad would have provided but he still carries similar traits of kindness, understanding and a gentle nature. He has had to endure living in an all female household but hopefully he will mature all the better for it.

Faris now has annual checkups at The Royal Children’s Hospital and is healthy and pretty active. He loves trains and cars and has just had his 5th Birthday at a farm with gumboots and mud!

Victoria & Tasmania