Chanatorn 'Peem' Namwong
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Story written by Pat Bunsongsikul
Baby Chanatorn was born with a cleft lip. Both parents were already coping with the surprise of pregnancy, and the resulting expenses, and now feared the financial impact of their child's birth defect.
In fact they had time to prepare, emotionally, for the birth. Their doctor, through prenatal checkups told the parents there was a chance their first child together would be born with a birth defect. Chanatorn’s mother Narumol has two children from a previous relationship.
After Chanatorn’s birth, the doctor told the new parents about the Operation Smile Charity mission and promised that they would be informed before the mission takes place.
A week before, the hospital called the mother to confirm the mission dates. This family lives about 30 km away from the hospital and the father had to take off a couple days of work to be with his wife and child. The family split expenses with another afflicted family in the same neighborhood, paying almost 1000 baht for a taxi hire, to travel to Sisaket.
The parents have not admitted to any harassment from their relatives or neighbors. They all express much love for the baby. Even the 2-yr old half-brother is very protective of his "Nong Nong".
Both parents believe, in part because the treatment will be free, that this is the best thing for their baby's future. They are thankful for the charity and supporters because without this option, they could not afford the operation.