Featured cherub of the week is Zac Harris. Zac is the son to our CDH International New Zealand Ambassador, Lisa Harris.
Lisa had this to share about her son, “Zac was born on the 5th September 1997 in Auckland, New Zealand, when I was 37 weeks pregnant. It was an induced birth due to poor fetal growth. At the time of his birth we had never heard of CDH. Zac weighed just over 5lbs at birth and was rushed to the NICU due to breathing problems. He was then diagnosed with left sided CDH at 4 hours old and we were transferred to Aucklands Starship Children’s Hospital via ambulance.
He was operated on Day 2….They found his stomach, spleen, left lobe of liver and most of the small bowel and transverse colon in the left hemi thorax. There was also a sac present and there was a small bit of lung high up on the left side. His diaphragm was deficient from the 12 o’clock position to the 6 o’clock position with a very thin rim of tissue. Post operatively he developed a lower respiratory tract infection and a large pleural effusion. By what we call a miracle from God he was allowed home only 3 weeks later, fully breast feeding.
Zac was quite unwell in his first few years of life. He ended up with many ear/throat and lung infections. He also tended to get a lot of allergies/hay fever. He had a very small appetite and was generally quite lethargic and he was put on a high protein/fat diet.He never crawled but shuffled on his bottom and didn’t walk until he was 2. His main problem though was chronic constipation. Over the years he was on many different forms of laxatives. However this didn’t affect his zest for life!
By the time Zac was a tween his health had improved dramatically. He still got hay fever/allergies but he was generally quite well. By 18 years of age he no longer took any form of laxatives. He has travelled to Korea and Israel on a school trip and he headed to Vanuatu doing mission work.
He is now 21 and enjoys a really good life. He is a keen photographer, skateboarder and adventurer. He is in his 3rd year of study in Christian Ministry and is a Youth Intern at Elim Church in Auckland, New Zealand.
CDH has not held him back at all, in fact he’s preached many times about his dramatic start to life. If you are interested you can check out his photography on Instagram @zackeithharris.”