Relive the fun of last year's Mott Golf Classic, held on June 3rd, 2013.
The Mott Golf Classic Committee was honored to have six-year-old Peyton Domzalski as our special guest at the 2013 Classic, and we are grateful to the Domzalski family for sharing their story.
Leanne Domzalski has the unique perspective of being both a caretaker and a caregiver. She chose her career as a nurse because of the impact the medical profession had on her family, especially her youngest child, Peyton, who was born with Spina Bifida.
Peyton was born in 2006 at a community hospital and then quickly transported by ambulance to the University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Leanne doesn't take that convenience of being close to Mott for granted. She says, "We are super fortunate to be so close. I won't move out of Michigan because of Mott."
Spina Bifida is a birth defect in which the spinal bones do not form properly around the spinal cord. Peyton has Myelomeiningocele, the most severe form of Spina Bifida, meaning that the spinal cord and nerves come through the gaps between the bones.
Leanne calls the weekend Peyton was born as "their lucky weekend" because they met Dr. Hugh Garton, Associate Professor of Neurological Surgery, for the first time. He performed Peyton's first surgery. Dr. Garton has a special bond with Peyton, and the Domzalskis respect and appreciate him immensely because of his hard work and dedication.
Six years and ten surgeries later, the Domzalskis still feel very fortunate that Peyton is able to get care at Mott Children's Hospital. They are grateful to Dr. Michelle Caird, Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, who has performed all of Peyton's orthopaedic surgeries and has helped him to stand and even walk. They also credit Dr. Liza Green, Assistant Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, for her integral role in Peyton's care and all of her work to coordinate and plan surgeries and services. The Domzalskis appreciate all of the staff, who constantly prove their investment in helping patients and families.
Leanne had always hoped that the surgeons could one day help Peyton stand, so she is thrilled at his progress: he can now walk with assistance! Peyton is an active kid who enjoys life. He plays baseball in the Plymouth Miracle League, but his favorite sport is golf. He can spend hours hitting golf balls.
As a nurse in Mott Hospital's Pediatric Cardio-Thoracic ICU, Leanne has seen firsthand how the Mott Golf Classic has helped Mott patients and families. She says, "The Ronald McDonald House within the hospital helps relieve parents' anxiety. If parents get a phone call in the middle of the night, they can go in their slippers to their child's room." She has also seen how social work's support has helped families in need. The Mott Golf Classic's support of social work programs helps families with day-to-day financial challenges.
As a mom and as a nurse, Leanne has witnessed the kind of care the University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital can offer families, and the changes it can make in a child's life. She is grateful that her son and family had access to the "very best" care possible.
M&M Blue visits kids at Mott, 2013.
Blue Visits Kids at Mott
It is nearly impossible to describe our day at C.S. Mott Children's Hospital on June 4th 2012. I am not sure I have ever had such a rewarding experience.
My sister and I spent the morning drive preparing ourselves for the sadness that hovers in every hospital corridor. The fact that we were going to be visiting kids made it even more difficult. Upon arriving, we met with hospital staff to receive our instructions, met with the larger-than-life Blue, and then headed upstairs with more than 200 plush M&M characters. Growing up an M&M kid, I have always known how people smile when you utter the name of these chocolate treats, but I was not prepared for the many people that surrounded Blue before we even made it to the elevator. Parents and kids alike gathered around with smiles on their faces and open arms to receive their new toys. It was impossible to feel a bit of sadness in the midst of such joy. One young girl held her yellow M&M close as she wrapped her arms around Blue, a picture captured forever in my memory.
As we made our way upstairs we were surprised to find no daunting hallways, white walls or bright lights. Instead there were beautiful pieces of children's artwork lining the walls, colored tiles on the floor, observation windows and telescopes in the corners. Each child's room had enough sunlight that many didn't even have their lights on. The rooms were personally decorated by each child with posters of sports teams and musicians held to the walls with butterfly magnets. Their handwriting and drawings lined the extra wall space made of dry erase surfaces. They had their own private bathrooms and showers with rooms large enough that their parents could stay close to their kids in their time of need. There was no hospital smell and there were no gloomy faces. I barely recognized the hospital staff in their kid-friendly attire and their smiles relieved many fears. I have never seen such a remarkable medical facility with such an amazing staff.
One young girl was unable to greet Blue in person; the risk for germs was just too high. As she put her hand on the glass window, Blue placed his there as well. In that moment, I knew what we had come to do: to lighten the load for these kids for just a moment, to bring a smile that just couldn't come in the morning, to take a picture of a family with a giant M&M and give a toy for a child to hold close when they needed a friend. In a place where we expected to see tears, we saw smiles. Where we imagined pain, we saw laughter and where we expected fear, we saw hope - in the eyes of the children, the smiles of the staff and the strength of the parents. While the golf outing was beautiful, the courses immaculate, there was no place I would have rather been than with those kids.
This hospital is not a hospital, it’s a home. It's a home where children are safe, where they can create, go to school, meet new friends and fall asleep knowing that their parents are near. It is remarkable thing to see a child smile, but knowing that you could possibly contribute to the laughter of a child and their parents, that's not something I can even put into words.Left to Right – Nicole Jameson, Kelly Jameson & Tom Jameson (Mars Associate)
FRANK BECKMANN BROADCASTS FROM MOTT
The Mott Golf Classic Family was happy to welcome Frank Beckmann to Mott & Women's Hospital on February 13, 2012, to sponsor his broadcast from the Family Resource Center on the 8th Floor of Mott.
Here, Frank talks with Ora Pescovitz, MD, Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs and CEO, University of Michigan Health System, about the new C.S. Mott Children's Hospital and Von Voigtlander Women's Hospital which opened in December, 2011.