AMELIA Pierce's parents waited five months to properly admire her sweet face.
The youngster was born with oesophageal atresia, a congenital condition which means that that the oesophagus does not properly join the stomach.
Amelia needed surgery at birth to insert a feeding tube directly into her stomach.
She also needed a tube in her mouth to drain saliva so that she did not choke.
At five months, she had further surgery to join her oesophagus and stomach which meant she could do away with the mouth tube.
It also meant that her parents, Jenny Sutherland and David Pierce, had a new daughter.
"As soon as they did the surgery, they took the tubes out. We'd never seen her face without a tube in it," Ms Sutherland said.
After spending her first five months in the Mater Children's Hospital in Brisbane, Amelia came home to Buderim where she continues to thrive.
She still receives formula through the gastrostomy tube to her stomach but is starting to experiment with food, showing a liking for chocolate custard, watermelon and Weet-Bix.
Mrs Sutherland has been told that could take up to two years for Amelia to eat and drink properly but she and her husband hope that she will be ready to eat her first birthday cake in five months time.
"She's showing more interest in food and touching things to her mouth," Mrs Sutherland said.
Mrs Sutherland said oesophageal atresia could affect children in different and multiple ways.
"We were very lucky that she only needed the two surgeries and, touch wood, she won't need any more," she said.
She said Amelia might have to eat slower and drink more water but she would otherwise be no different from any other child.
"I just want people to know that if something like this gets diagnosed in their family, it's not the worst thing," she said.
"If someone says there's going to be a baby in the family with oesophageal atresia, it's not that bad. The babies will grow and they will come to be just like every body else. It's a lot of hard work for the first couple of years but then everything will be all right."
- Affects about one in 4425 babies.
- Occurs around 3-4 weeks gestation. Cause unknown.
- Represents the failure of the oesophagus to develop as a continuous passage.
- Comes in multiple configurations. Often, it is accompanied by tracheo-oesphageal fistula, where there is an abnormal opening between the trachea and oesophagus.
- First signs can be an unusual amount of amniotic fluid while the mother is still pregnant.
- The first signs at birth can be excessive drooling, coughing, choking and sneezing because the baby cannot swallow properly.
Positioned in the highly sought after "old part of town", this elevated duplex presents an exciting opportunity to the owner occupier or investor. Comfortable...
Close to the town centre in a beautifully landscaped complex, this apartment offers exceptional value. The open plan living flows out to a lush and private...
Here is a rare opportunity to purchase a stunning 4 acres with sunny and comfortable house and pool, plus gardens, orchard, chicken coup and paddocks that make the...
Located in a quiet cul-de-sac, this split level home offers plenty of space for the growing family or extra income. * 702sqm block with established gardens *...
This immaculately presented 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom apartment offers contemporary living and the convenience of a great location. Recently renovated to take...
Peacefully located on a large 830sqm block, this character filled home is ripe with potential to add your touch and reap the rewards. The horseshoe shaped floor...
Tallow Creek is a recently approved development site located in the vibrant community of Suffolk Park. This parcel of 10,732 m2 has DA approval for 9 residential...
The epitome of relaxed north coast living, this spectacular home is set on 652m2 north/west facing, elevated land with a beautiful rural outlook. Positioned at the...
OPEN HOUSE SUNDAY 6 SEPTEMBER 12.00 - 12.30pm OUR OWNER HAS FOUND HER NEXT PROPERTY... so do not delay on this one... High above the road, in this quiet...
What an incredibly rare find! Approximately 2 acres (8963m2) of beautiful elevated north east facing land in town Byron Bay. There is an original 3 bedroom...
Join the Community.
Get your local news, your way.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.