Meet Colbie Duborow!
On November 22, 2017, after entering premature labor, Amanda and Colin Durborow welcomed their twins, Colbie and Bennett, to the world. Born at just 23 weeks, Colbie and Bennett were considered micro-preemies, with Colbie weighing 1 pound, 2 ounces, and Bennett weighing 1 pound, 4 ounces. The twins were immediately sent to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), where tragically, Bennett died two days later. Colbie remained in the NICU fighting for her life. “She suffered a bilateral brain bleed,” shares Amanda. “She had a grade 3, grade 4 bleed and she was diagnosed with hydrocephalus.”
Hydrocephalus is the buildup of cerebrospinal fluid which places extra pressure on the brain causing brain damage. At two months old, Colbie had a Ventriculoperitoneal Programmable (VP) Shunt placed. This shunt is a device positioned in the back of Colbie’s head that helps the fluid drain from Colbie’s brain so pressure doesn’t build. “Colbie has undergone a total of seven surgeries, six of which were brain surgeries. The girl’s a champ,” shares Amanda.
After 153 days in the NICU, Colbie was able to go home, but Amanda and her husband weren’t sure what the future held for her little girl, “I remember the doctors telling us that they had no idea what Colbie’s quality of life would be like. We just didn’t know what to expect.”
As a preemie, Colbie started with early intervention and outpatient physical therapy early on to stay on top of her development. After about two years of therapy, Amanda and her husband ultimately made the decision to switch to Children’s Specialized Hospital (CSH), “I felt in my gut that we needed to make a move,” says Amanda. “It was nerve-wracking and I kept thinking, ‘are we making the right choice?’, but CSH came highly recommended from other NICU moms. We’ve been here for about a year now and we’re thrilled with the decision!”
After making the switch to CSH, Amanda and her husband received the official diagnosis that along with Hydrocephalus, Colbie also has Cerebral Palsy (CP), which affects her ability to move and maintain balance and posture. “We started noticing early on that Colbie was experiencing some delays and weakness in her legs and on her left side, so when we did get the CP diagnosis, it didn’t come as a huge shock,” shares Amanda.
Colbie now attends outpatient physical therapy appointments where she works on using her forearm crutches, progressing from her gait trainer, and even recently was able to recently take steps with her crutches without support. You can follow along on Colbie's journey on Instagram @unstoppable.mama.bear to see her therapy appointments and behind the scenes of the ups and downs of her journey!