BOES.ORG - Children's Rights Across the World
The Original Internet Lifeline
BOES.ORG & Rotary International District 7490, Gift of Life Foundation, New Jersey, USA - Internet Lifesaving Action for 3 months old EJ, Eldwin Jon Balino from the Philippines.
Incoming letter, an appeal for help.
I am Ma. Elena Gatchalian-Balino, 30 years old and a
new mother of a 22-day old baby boy. My husband and I
got married last year and was blessed to be pregnant
after our wedding. Everybody, my family and friends,
was looking forward for the baby I was about to give
birth then, I am the last member of the family of six
who doesnít have a child then.
Last January 4, 2002, I gave birth to Eldwin Jon G.
Balino at the Philippine General Hospital. I was
induced as per my ob-gyneís advice. Everything went
well with my delivery and it was such a wonderful
experience for me. My son was given to me two hours
after the delivery. EJ having a score of 9.9 on his
apgar test, the resident doctors of PGHís nursery,
decided to have the child with me in the ward,
declaring him as a healthy baby. It was truly a
wonderful experience seeing the child you bore for
nine months. My family and friends were very happy
until my pediatrician visited my son EJ.
By January 5, Dr. Benilda Sanchez checked my son and
she heard ďmurmursĒ from EJ. We were advised to
submit EJ for a 2d-echo exam. When I asked her what
could be the cause of the murmur, she told us that the
baby could have some heart problems. Last January 8,
my husband and I went to Philippine Childrenís Medical
Center and we had EJís heart ultrasound by a
pedia-cardiologist. HE WAS DIAGNOSED WITH TRICUSPID
ATRESIA. During the ultrasound, I canít help but cry
when he was diagnosed (the doctor was diagnosing my
sonís heart and he was addressing resident doctors
whom my husband and I suspect are studying to become
pedia-cardiologists as well). I just canít stop
crying as Iíve been hearing familiar terms Iíve heard
before because I had a nephew who died of a congenital
heart disease when he was 13 years old, he had a TOF.
I canít express in words the sadness I felt then,
learning my first-born child is also a blue baby.
Honestly, Iíve been considering naming my son after my
nephew for my family to remember a very good nephew.
Iíve never thought that my son will also be a blue
baby just like his cousin.
My husband and I are both Church volunteer workers,
our income is just enough for our daily living. Now
God has given us another trial, to test our faith in
Him, through our son EJ. We believe that God has
reasons for giving us EJ this way, and we believe He
will show us the way to succeed in this trial.
As per Dr. Jonas del Rosarioís advise, my son has to
undergo BT shunt after one month, and two more shunts
on his 6th month and when he turns a year old and an
open heart surgery when heís around 7 years old. We
got a second opinion from Dr. Emy Collado of the
Philippine Heart Center, and she said, we may not have
to submit EJ for a BT shunt, that is if he continues
not to be in distress. Financially, sir/madame, we
donít have the means for EJís surgery, so we looked
for other ways for EJ to undergo the needed surgery
for his survival.
Others may call it fate, but I believe its faith.
Donna Cueto, my best friend and a reporter from the
Philippine Daily Inquirer, has written the case of
Dajed, the first Filipino who was granted operation by
the Gift of Life Foundation. Last January 3, the day
before I gave birth, Donna has written another article
about the denial of US Visa of Jerden and her mother
for an operation in the US. Never in my wildest
dreams that Donnaís awareness and support for children
with congenital heart disease would also be my hope
for my child to undergo surgery for his life.
I am writing to you as the mother of Eldwin Jon. I am
seeking your help for my 22-day old son to undergo the
needed surgery to extend his life. My nephewís life
was cut short because he has not undergone the needed
surgery for his sickness. My family really felt his
loss, it was one of the most painful experience for my
family. We want to be good parents for our son and we
know with Godís help and instruments, he will not
suffer the same fate as my nephew.
We are praying for Godís intercession, we are praying
that you may also respond to our plea so that our son
EJ may grow up to become an individual who will also
make a difference in the lives of every person he
Ma. Elena Gatchalian-Balino
EJ, Eldwin Jon Balino, Index
"My first-born child is also a blue baby"
EJ, Eldwin Jon Balino - Photo
EJ Echo III
EJ Echo II
EJ Echo I
Lifesaving via the Internet, in international cooperation:
A/ Ongoing Internet Lifelines 2002
B/ more Lifesaving Actions 2002
C/ even more Lifesaving Actions 2002
D/ Searching for external Action 2002