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Meet Megan K, Parent Mentor at Akron Children's Hospital

Megan K

Megan's Story

Hello!  My name is Megan. I am married to my husband, Matt, and we have a beautiful daughter, Carleen. I am a former educator with 12 years of experience teaching in public schools. Currently, I am a stay-at-home mom focusing on helping Carleen grow and develop as she continues to overcome setbacks from being an early preemie. My husband is an accountant with his MBA. He balances being an involved and supportive husband and dad along with his career.

Carleen was born at 29-weeks due to a severe case of preeclampsia. She came into this world letting her presence known fighting and crying loudly. From the moment she arrived, she has been our sweet, spunky, and feisty girl!

Carleen was transported to the NICU at Akron Children's Hospital after delivery. She spent approximately 10 days in acute care, being intubated for 24 hours day. She was then moved to the Feeding and Growing unit where she stayed for the duration of her time in the NICU. Carleen was in the NICU at Akron Children's Hospital for about 3 months. During that time, Matt and I were fortunate enough to be able to stay with her. We experienced early preemie challenges with bradycardia and apnea events along with the dreadful eye exams, feeding challenges and ongoing therapies. We felt very blessed for Carleen's medical care team of doctors, nurses, and therapists! They became our NICU family as they educated us on how to care for Carleen and to understand her development.

It is hard to believe it has been more than 2 years since we were last in the NICU. Upon coming home, Carleen continued to have early preemie challenges which has led to continued therapies. Carleen had gross motor delays as well as torticollis. Her torticollis was caused by a large hemangioma that ulcerated the skin on her neck. As a result, Carleen received medical treatment in the form of an oral medication.  She had a total of 4 hemangiomas, the largest on her neck and two on her face with the concern of the one on her eyelid. Carleen wears orthotics to help with arch support which is due to delayed muscle development. This is the primary reason for her gross motor delays.

Carleen also wears corrective lenses, which was determined at her 6-month follow-up eye appointment.  She continues to have regular eye exams to monitor her vision. Additionally, Carleen has received therapy for feeding difficulties along with sensory processing issues. Carleen’s team includes a dietician, speech therapist, and occupational therapist. She has made tremendous strides in her feeding and continues to progress.

In addition to all of Carleen's therapies and eye appointments, she is also seen by a gastroenterologist for gastroesophageal reflux as well as gluten sensitivity. She also sees an allergist for chronic sinusitis.

While Carleen has had a very busy journey, we recognize how far she has come and are beyond grateful for her medical care team that has helped her grow and develop to this point. Every NICU journey is different and even the journey after coming home from the NICU. Carleen's journey was short in comparison to many but also longer and more challenging some. No matter the length of the journey in the NICU, no matter how the journey after looks, it is an emotional and challenging time. It is through the support of others, Carleen's medical care team, and people who can empathize that have helped us.  From my experience as Carleen's momma, I hope to be a support to those who are experiencing the NICU journey and even after. While it is challenging and emotional, it is a journey that will make you stronger and empathize more with others. It is a journey that will forever change you as you marvel at your miracle.  It is a journey in which there is a village of support walking with you.


Megan is a parent mentor for these conditions: Feeding Disorders, Food Allergies, Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, Hemangiomas, Prematurity.

Megan is a mentor for these care services: Allergy, Developmental Delay, Eye, Feeding and Nutrition, Gastroenterology, NICU, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery

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Mentor Gallery Photo

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