Luca Gennuso suffered severe brain damage when he stopped breathing for 27 minutes the day he almost drowned.
The lack of oxygen deteriorated the neurological centre in charge of his movement, sight and hearing.
Now, his family has turned to oxygen treatments as part of his extensive therapy program.
It was a beautiful Monday afternoon, long weekend, the sun was out, kids were playing having a wonderful time.
On May 19th 2014 our lives were shattered when our loving, charismatic, beautiful 21 month old baby boy suffered a near drowning.
Found and pulled out of the water within minutes was given CPR but had no vital signs. Rushed to the local hospital where a team of doctors and nurses worked on his lifeless body and revived Luca after 27 mintues.
We prayed so hard that Jesus would give us our baby back and by the Grace of God our baby came back. We knew at this point that Luca wanted to be here and was not ready to go to be with Jesus and this is howour fight began.
His weak and sick little body was transported to Sick Kids by the orange team, sitting in that seat watching my baby fighting for his life the nurse turns to me and says ” you have a very sick little boy that may or may not make it no matter what happens please keep your seatbelt on and keep calm.” I was praying the whole ride to Sick Kids begging Jesus to please let me see my baby smile again. We got to Sick Kids where we were asked to sit in a room where the doctor would come talk to us. We were greeted by a doctor who came in and could’nt even look at us in the face and said what was our worst nightmare ” Things are not looking good in there, your baby is having a very hard time breathing, I’ve seen this type of injury before and the child has serious neurological problems or they usually pass away.” Devastated, shocked, confused walked out of that room shared this news with a quiet waiting room full of friends and family that shortly became complete chaos.
The time came where we could see our baby, shaking and scared we came face to face with our baby that was fighting for his life, a machine breathing for him, a blanket regulating his temperature, iv’s all over his body, medication to regulate his blood pressure, antibiotic for infection, a neckbrace to keep his head alligned and the list goes on.
Days and nights passed, medications were coming off one by one. MRI was scheduled. Luca was showing very little signs of life, but for usa little bit of life was enough for us to fight for our baby Luca.
Post one week MRI showed severe brain damage, we were devastated. Doctors then discussed taking out his his breathing tube to see if he could breath on his own. Knowing that this machine was keeping our baby alive we wanted to make sure that he was strong enough.
The day came post 2 weeks accident everyone was ready, they took out this tube that was keeping my baby alive, he was doing amazing breathing on his own for an hour when things took a turn for the worse they needed to put the tube back, he couldn’t breathe on his own. We were broken.
We had a meeting with the doctors who said that things were not looking good, Luca did not have a cough, gag, or swallow and was told he was never going to get them back. Devastated and confused I just could not imagine my life without this amazing little boy I knew that Jesus had a plan for him.
More tests were scheduled a hearing test that showed he was deaf and an eye test that showed inconclusive but most likely blind. We knew in our hearts that this could not be it. He came back to life after 27 minutes he has plans to stay.
Doctors planned to take Luca’s breathing tube out again and asked us to sign papers if we wanted to put it back if it failed, we signed the papers we couldn’t give up yet. The extubation (taking the breathing tube out) was going to happen on Tuesday 10th well……………. that Saturday Luca had a gag it was barely even there but it was there, Monday of that week Luca had a cough it was faint but it was a cough. We felt so ready for the extubation that was going to happen on that Tuesday.
Extubation day…….. scariest day of our lives. Everyone was there ready as can be i asked if i could hold Luca when they took it out. Holding him close to my chest singing ” You are my Sunshine” they slowly took it out. I continued to sing to him he was doing so well for an hour and a half that’s when our little Luca started struggling to breathe. We did sign papers to put the tube back but i knew in my heart that i could not put my baby through this again, we decided right there not to put it back. We called his older loving sisters and our family so we could be there with him as he took his last breath.
A miracle happened right there and then Luca continued to breathe on his own one hr went by, then three hrs and seven hours, a day. It was amazing to see this little baby and his will to survive.
Bad news again……… he would not be able to control his secretions because his gag was so weak and his cough was barely even there he would die in a couple of days. I knew in my heart that my baby was going to prove everyone wrong….. even the doctors.
We decided that we wanted to be transferred to a centre that was for children that were at the end of their life. If my baby was going to die in a couple of days i wanted his last days to be spent outside blowing bubbles, watching his sisters do cartwheels and breathing fresh air. A special place called Emily’s house would be our next stop.
What an amazing place……… we spent every minute with Luca and his big sisters trying to make every moment a memorable one. Luca was definitely not at the end of his life more like the beginning of his life. Luca started to move, tracking, smiling, crying it was amazing to see him slowly improve. This is when we started alternative therapy. Hyperbaric chamber was first and boy did Luca really wake up there. Thanks to a very special person for guiding me in the right direction and your generous donation. We love you. We stayed at Emily’s House for 2 months learning about Luca’s care. Everyone there was AMAZING. They taught us everything we needed to know to go home, from giving medications to suctioning and everything in between. On August 24th we were discharged and ready to go home. It was bittersweet we felt so blessed to have our baby Luca home but missed everything that we had before the accident.
We are now seeking extensive therapies to get the most out of his recovery that are unfortunately not covered by insurance. We are asking for prayers and donations any amount contributed to Luca’s recovery is truly appreciated.