On the 29th of May 2012 our son, Rocco Giuseppe Chiappetta was born at the Evelina London Children’s Hospital.
Within seconds, his life would be changed forever as he was rushed to the neonatal intensive care unit.
However, our story really began when doctors picked up on our early scans that our son would be born with a bilateral cleft lip, palate and numerous congenital heart defects.
We were devastated! Our world felt crushed and we were terrified.
But, we remained strong and stayed positive.
When Rocco was born, he spent six weeks in intensive care on a heart monitor and breathing ventilator that kept him alive.
By week 3 we were told that Rocco wouldn’t make it.
So, what happened?
Well, firstly my wife showed tremendous strength and never gave up hope, she questioned absolutely everything and everyone. All that mattered to her was that our son would have his heart surgery and that fate would do the rest (never underestimate the power of a mother).
We had the support of our loving family and friends who prayed for Rocco every single day to get better and pull through.
We cried A LOT.
We prayed A LOT.
We had amazing NHS doctors and nurses who were just absolutely brilliant. The nurses would often write positive notes in Rocco’s diary about his sats/breathing/blood results improving to keep our hopes up.
We had one of the leading children’s hospitals in the UK (Evelina London Children’s Hospital) supporting and looking after our son with the best equipment, medicine and staff. We were never fully able to show our gratitude to the incredible NHS.
We had the Ronald McDonald House charity provide us with accommodation, a short 5 minutes away from the hospital so we could be with our son 24 hours a day.
After more tests, we were informed that Rocco would have open-heart surgery. That surgery was the longest 6 hours of our lives.
The next few days we faced extreme adversity, as they began to disconnect all the wires that were helping to pump his heart and then removed the ventilator which was helping him breath. They needed to see if Rocco was strong enough to make it by himself.
Rocco SMASHED IT.
He came through every single challenge stronger than before.
When we came home we were excited, scared and nervous. We were now responsible for giving him all of his medicines and tube feeding him.
We had regular appointments and plenty of last-minute emergency drives to the nearest hospital but Rocco gradually got bigger, stronger and healthier.
Fast forward 8 years and Rocco attends an additional needs school, which he loves. He runs around and plays like a kid who doesn’t know he has a heart condition. He’s cheeky, funny, a bit mischievous and very intelligent (he’s already ordering pay per view cartoons on sky)
In a nutshell, he is awesome. He is everything we could have asked for and MORE.
Rocco Giuseppe Chiappetta was born on the 29th of May 2012 with Charge Syndrome, which includes: a bilateral cleft lip and palate, major congenital heart defects and scoliosis.
He is living his life to the fullest thanks to the amazing support of The Evelina London Children’s Hospital, The NHS and the Ronald McDonald House Charities.
To thank these amazing charities, ROC CO BRANDS are donating 5% of all profits to them.
For more info on these amazing charities and the incredible work they do please visit their websites:
These charities, and the incredible people who work within them, helped save our son’s life. We will forever be grateful.
Please help us support them to continue the incredible work they do.