The Coyle Family Story
During a regular 28-week medical follow up for their soon-to-be-born twins, Becca and Jeff Coyle’s life plans shifted in a major way. Doctors noticed that one of their twins, Logan, was not growing at the expected rate. They monitored his heartrate and observed that it dropped and thought he may have been in distress. They performed an emergency-C section, which meant that the twins were born three months early, and they would need to spend weeks in the NICU in New York, where they live.
Logan’s sister, Riley, was able to go home with her parents after 10 weeks, but his health began to deteriorate, and the team of doctors decided he would be better served at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. At first, the family travelled back and forth between New York and Philadelphia, but the commute became increasingly difficult. “When it became clear that Logan was going to be in the NICU for more than just a month or two, we needed to figure out a long-term solution,” says Becca.
Fortunately, the Coyles heard about the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House, and they were able to get a room in the Chestnut Street House. “In October of 2016, Riley and I moved into the Ronald McDonald House, and that became our home for the next 4 months.” Jeff would work during the week in Manhattan and come to Philadelphia every weekend to be with his family. Becca and Riley were on their own much of the time, spending their days in the NICU with Logan. “The Ronald McDonald House was our only option, and it was a great option, and there would have been no other way for us to make it work,” says Jeff.
Becca recalls the many ways that the House was able to help support her during that chaotic time. “I ended up developing a really close relationship with three other families in similar situations that I still to this day talk to regularly. We traded stories, shared successes and milestones, and also bounced ideas of one another. That was something that I never would have gotten had I just been staying on my own somewhere.”
As a new mom, the House was also able to keep her young daughter engaged and entertained after a long day at the hospital. “Having activities for the little ones to do at the end of the day…that took a lot of stress off of my plate,” says Becca. “The Ronald McDonald House took care of me so that I could take care of my babies, and that’s truly the best gift that someone could give you in those situations.”
After 180 days in CHOP’s NICU, Logan was able to leave the hospital with his family and return home to New York. Today, they Coyles are doing well and Logan is happy and healthy. Recently, they were back in Philadelphia while Logan underwent an intensive feeding program at CHOP, which is the last hurdle he needed to overcome. Logan was able to experience the House, running around the playroom, engaging with other kids, and of course, playing with his sister Riley. Becca says, “It’s actually like the easiest place to raise a 2 years old ever! This place has kind of become a second home to us.”