Miracle Monday: Cystic Fibrosis Awareness Month brings hope for one local family

SPOKANE, Wash. — Every month, 4 News Now highlights a Miracle Monday story to shine a light on all that Children’s Miracle Network is doing for pediatric health care in our community.

When it comes to caring for kids, parents sacrifice everything for their children’s happiness and well-being.

In this month’s Miracle Monday, the Chapman family brings to light the importance of the parent’s mental and physical health. This is always important, particularly when it comes to caring for kids with special needs.

“I like to play on the playground while I’m at school,” said Finn Chapman.

Seven-year-old Finn looks like your average kid, but he’s battling a genetic disease.

“I eat veggies and stuff. I play soccer. I mostly win games, but not a lot,” Finn explained.

“A baby born with Cystic Fibrosis doesn’t have lung disease or malnutrition that can develop so it’s very important parents follow the things that are known to help children grow up and reach their full potential,” said Dr. Alma Chavez, a Pediatric Pulmonologist at Sacred Heart.

Finn’s parents are doing just that.

“We stick him to the air compressor and it pumps air into a vest and it vibrates his chest,” said Finn’s mom Lindsay Chapman.

For Finn, the treatment is focused on his lungs and tummy.

“It feels like it’s vibrating my whole body and it’s like ahh. It’s just like kind of tickles,” Finn said.

This machine, and daily treatment, help break up the mucus that can get clogged in his lungs.

“One really important message that we received early on is that you can’t live in a bubble and we have to make the most of every day,” Lindsay said.

The Chapmans have managed to navigate life around the Cystic Fibrosis treatment.

“We go camping with him all the time and we have a generator and we’ve figured out life around it,” said Finn’s dad, Nick Chapman.

They’ve seen an important shift in the care since they started on this journey with Finn.

“More and more they’re checking in on the families, as well. If you think about it, we are the caregivers, but if we are not healthy, mentally or physically, we’re probably not giving the best care that we could for this guy who needs it,” Lindsay said.

Dr. Chavez doesn’t only advocate for Finn’s family, but his future, too.

“I have been working with them on a one-person research study. Other patients who do qualify for it have had life-altering benefits from it. Things like improving in sports, improving in schoolwork, and having a better outlook on life,” explained Dr. Chavez.

She says these patients go from having a life-limiting disease to looking forward to college, marriage, and having kids of their own.

The Chapman family will get updates on the study results within the next month.

If you’d like to support the healthcare of young kids, just like Finn, consider donating to the Children’s Miracle Network. You can do that right, here!

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