Force 4 Good: Mom's idea to help daughter spreads to others
Breathing machines, feeding tubes and heart monitors are a lot for a child in the hospital to understand. And it's easy for them to be frightened by it all.
Easing her daughter's fears was the motivation behind South Lyon mom Amanda Holdsworth's idea.
When Holdsworth's daughter, Avery, was 18 months old, the family found out she needed open heart surgery.
"The doctor cam in and said, 'I have good news and bad news. The good news is we can fix it. The bad news is she has holes in her heart," Holdworths said. "It was devastating."
Six weeks after the diagnosis, the family prepared for Avery to have surgery.
"We prayed a lot," Holdsworth said.
While Avery recovered, Holdsworth came up with the idea to replace her drab hospital gown with a handmade T-shirt. It was something Holdsworth said made her daughter feel more comfortable and it also helped eased the process of getting a shirt on and off when doctors needed to do check ups. Plus, it Holdsworth said it made her feel good as a mom to know her daughter was wearing something clean and something that looked like what a normal toddler would wear.
The homemade T-shirt Holdsworth came up with is the "peek a boo boo" shirt. It has snaps up the front for easy procedure access.
"I just had a couple of extra shirts and I put it out there and said, 'Hey, does anyone want any of these?' And all of a sudden the requests just started spilling in," Holdsworth said.
She created a business out of the idea called "The Heal a Boo Boo project."
Julia Ruetherford's 3-year-old son, Josh, also has heart trouble and said the shirt have worked great for times when he has to have EKGs.
"The doctors love them. You just snap it. There are no straps that they have to untie," Ruetherford said.
Holdsworth makes each shirt with a unique design.
"In the last two years, I have done over 300. I have sent them around the world. Last month, I had one that went off to Sweden. So, I don't know, everyone is hearing about it," Holdsworth said.
To request a shirt, or donate to "Heal a Boo Boo," click here.
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