On March 18, 2020, we welcomed our second daughter, Luna Valentina, to this world. This moment was not only a historic moment in our family, but also simultaneously, for the world, which was beginning to change from the way we knew it before.

COVID-19 had just become classified as a global pandemic, hitting Montreal just a couple days before Luna’s birth. At the time, we did not understand or expect the pandemic to affect us the way that it has. I don’t think anyone was prepared for it. 

Luna Valentina March18
Luna Valentina Patuelli, my daugther

Going into Sainte-Justine on March 18, in the early morning, we could feel a shift in the energy. We noticed security at the entrance, and at the administration desk, we were asked questions about travel and illness. Then, in the days following Luna’s birth, safety protocols evolved daily, and we noticed fewer and fewer people in the hospital. 

We became aware that the COVID-19 situation was becoming much more severe than predicted. However, inside Sainte-Justine’s walls, that feeling quickly dissipated as we saw the staff doing everything they could to keep the situation under control and making sure that we were still being treated and taken care of. 

I’ve been familiar with Sainte-Justine since my birth, in 1984. I was followed early on at Sainte-Justine and Shriners because of my condition. I was born with Arthrogryposis, a neuromuscular disorder that affects the joints, bones, and muscles in my legs and shoulders.

From the birth of our first daughter, Aura Isabella, we knew we wanted our children to be born at Sainte-Justine, in case there were any special medical attention needed immediately after birth. In Aura’s case, no extra attention was needed: she is now 4 years old, healthy and full of energy!  

However, her little sister, Luna, was born with Arthrogryposis, just like me. Her legs are very similar to my legs. Two days after her birth, the Orthopedics staff put a cast on Luna’s club feet. Since then, we have been going to the hospital twice weekly for her casting. We have noticed an incredible improvement in her feet and it’s all thanks to the amazing staff in Orthopedics. 

Luca Header
My family
Luca Famille
Luca Famille 2

We know that we will become more acquainted with the hospital in the years to come as Luna continues to go in for more treatment, but we know that we’ll always be in good hands. 

The staff at Sainte-Justine - not only the doctors and nurses - but also the attendants, the administrative, restaurant and security teams, as well as volunteers, all bring a special attention to the patients' needs that make you feel part of the family. Each member of the staff has a passion and dedication towards children. Towards your child. We are extremely grateful to have Luna being seen at Sainte-Justine and we look forward to having them continue following her evolution. 

Luca Chu
The Orthopedic department team

This is why we encourage you to support Sainte-Justine during the current crisis. If you can, become a front-line donor and join forces with Sainte-Justine. For Luna, and for all the other little patients, who continue to benefit from the best care possible.

*The remarks expressed in this article reflect the opinion solely of the author and should not be considered as representative of the CHU Sainte-Justine Foundation.

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