ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Baby Dream never stops smiling, no matter the odds.
That's why she is an adorable, inspiring star at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg.
The little girl never fails to display a big loving personality, even after major surgeries to correct both congestive heart failure and biliary atresia, the latter requiring major gastrointestinal surgery.
"It's unusual for a baby to have two such significant malformations, needing both the major GI surgery and the major cardiac surgery," says Dr. Bevin Weeks, Dream's pediatric cardiologist at the hospital.
But even "when she was stuck in ICU," says Dr. Weeks, Dream always greeted her with a smile, ready to talk and play. "She was always like that!"
Dream is nine months old now. She may need more surgery down the road but for now she is happy and thriving.
Her parents, Branice Burks and Youselin Joseph of Bradenton, say they drew strength from Dream's strength.
"Even though she was going through all that, she still kept her smile, and that made Mommy and Daddy so proud," said Burks.
"She's a Dream, so we have to believe in her," added Joseph.