Graicey was flown via Flight For Life to Children’s Hospital Colorado to undergo the first of many surgeries when she was only 2 days old.
Although Graicey's mom Tairah had a normal pregnancy, Graicey was born with missing toes and a club foot. She couldn't keep food down, and X-rays revealed that Graicey’s bowels were turned. She also had vertebrae and ribs that were fused together on one side, her fingers were fused together and she had a hole in her heart.
Refusing to be held back
Graicey’s first surgery at 2 days old fixed her bowels but caused severe acid reflux. Tairah had to resuscitate Graicey several times because the reflux would cause her to stop breathing. At 3 months old, Graicey underwent another procedure to have her stomach wrapped around her esophagus. She also had her club foot fixed and her fingers separated.
Graicey spent her first year of life in casts on various parts of her body. She underwent several other surgeries, including a spinal fusion. She learned to walk in a body cast because she was not going to be held back – an attitude she has held onto to this day, even though she continues to deal with pain on a daily basis.
28 surgeries in 12 years
Now 12 years old, Graicey has already undergone 28 surgeries and will need more as she grows.
“She has taken her pain, mental or physical, and used it to be better and to succeed,” said Tairah. “You will rarely see her sad and never hear her complain about the life she was given.”
Today, Graicey has taught herself to play the piano and enjoys writing original stories.
“She is not going to be held back in life,” said Tairah.