NISKAYUNA, N.Y. (NEWS10) — After spending nearly six years at Pathways Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Niskayuna, 6-year-old Christian is finally returning home. Admitted on December 23, 2015, Christian is being discharged Tuesday.
Christian has been at Pathways since he was two months old. As an infant, he was diagnosed with central hypoventilation syndrome, a condition that causes inadequate breathing during sleep. Now, just two days shy of six years since entering, he’s ready for a new journey.
“He gets to meet the rest of the family, the rest of the friends. He’ll be going to school soon too. I’m happy,” said Christian’s mom Ebony Dudley.
Dudley credits the staff at Pathways for their hard work in ensuring this day could come. “I want to thank everybody here at Pathways. He loves them. They were here every step of the way, I finally get to get him home,” she said, emotionally.
It was a bittersweet moment for the staff at Pathways who have been with Christian throughout his journey for nearly six years. “We’ve had to teach him how to walk, how to talk, how to eat, all these good things. In the process, Ebony has been there with us 110%. To have the family, the support as well as Pathways clinical staff, it’s a beautiful thing,” said Tammie Thomas, recreation director at Pathways.
The Pathways family also made sure Santa came to Niskayuna a few days early to help give Christian a holiday sendoff. “I think he’ll miss us, but I think he’ll love being home with his sister and his mom and all the rest of the family. It’s beautiful for Christmas season,” Thomas said.
Dudley and her mother have completed days of training to make sure they’re ready the long-term medical needs of Christian as he transitions to life at home for the first time.