When Ryder was 5 days old he was having trouble breathing and was emergency air lifted to Brisbane from Cairns. Finding out Ryder had a heart condition was a huge shock to his parents.
Ryder spent the first few months of his life in the Brisbane Hospital and in this time underwent numerous heart operations. He was born with a number of heart defects including Transposition of the Great Arteries, multiple holes in his heart and only has half a functioning heart.
At 1 year old Ryder underwent a major open heart surgery called the Glenn Procedure. The last major surgery Ryder had was when he was 6 years old.
Ryder’s mum Caroline said you can never prepare yourself as a parent to hear such devastating news about your child and what they will have to endure.
“Having a heart child can be very traumatic and emotional however I would not have changed Ryder for the world. Ryder has continually showed strength, courage and determination.” Caroline said.
“The Fontan Procedure was the toughest, with a long time in hospital as Ryder’s drains would continually fill with fluid. We thought we would never get to go home.”
“All the nurses and doctors fell in love with Ryder with his big blue sparkly eyes, red hair and huge smile.”
“HeartKids was a great support for me and my family, offering meals and conversation through some very difficult, emotional and challenging times. As a young family with another son Saxon (Ryders older brother), it can put a lot of stress and strain on the family.”
Ryder loves his school and friends, he swims, surfs, runs, and always puts a smile on everyone’s face.