Images Captured By Jag Nagra
Within hours of Colton’s birth, parents Wil and Shelley were told that their little boy was gravely ill. He had an extremely low platelet count and needed many transfusions to stabilize his condition and stop the bleeding. Doctors diagnosed him with a rare blood disorder called neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia (NAIT). NAIT causes the mother’s immune system to build antibodies that attack the fetus’s platelets, often leading to spontaneous bleeds in the brain and other organs. As a result, Colton suffered a massive stroke on his second day of life. “He was the biggest baby in the Special Care Nursery at the time, as well as the sickest. It was heart-breaking.”
Colton’s little sister, Payten-Raye, also had NAIT. She was diagnosed in utero and through extensive medical intervention before and after she was born, she did not suffer any brain bleeds.
Now, Colton is like a typical almost-nine-year-old little boy. He loves spending time outdoors with his friends. While he is at high risk for seizures and has some difficulties with speech, he enjoys going to school and learning new things. This Tiny Light also had big dreams – he wants to be a firefighter. The family has learned not to take anything for granted and enjoys every moment spent together. “I have all the hope in the world. I hope that Colton gets the chance to do and become whatever he wants to in life. I hope that nothing holds him back.”
Written by Elaine Yong