Parenting can often come with difficult decisions and criticism from loved ones. However, when one father from Virginia decided to take a selfie with his 3-year-old son and posted it to social media, it wasn’t just his family who had something to say. The Internet erupted in an uproar after they noticed what else was exposed in the photo.
Robert Selby, is the father of a three-year-old boy named Chace. Just to show his son how special he is, Robert has been taking a selfie of him every year. However, after he posted the most recent picture to his Instagram page, onlookers were left stunned when they noticed what else was exposed in the photo, and it’s now gone viral.
Unfortunately, when Chace was born, he was diagnosed with a serious condition called Tetralogy of Fallot. “It’s a rare congenital heart defect,” according to WUSA 9. It not only made it difficult for him to breathe, but it has forced him to already undergo two open heart surgeries as well as making it necessary for him to have a gastrostomy (feeding) tube in order to eat.
In fact, when people glanced at the dad’s most recent selfie with his son, they immediately noticed what else was exposed in the photo — the boy’s feeding tube port. However, that’s not all it caught as Robert is also pictured with the same feeding tube opening on his own stomach.
CAN Y’ALL PLEASE REPOST, TAG A FRIEND, EMAIL, SHARE THIS STORY ON ALL SOCIAL PLATFORMS so we can Help Fight and Bring Awareness to CHD. ❤️✊🏾🙏🏿. . . My Mr. #stealyourheart #teamchace 🤴🏾 is sucking in his stomach, trying to show off his abs like his daddy but all you see are his little ribs. 😦😁💪🏾 I just cut and glued one of his G-tube on me to show support for him and bring awareness. My son was born with a Congenital Heart Defect (#chd) called Tetralogy of Fallot (#tof) and he uses a Feeding-Tube (#gtube) to help with him being under weight due to him not eating orally as much since he was a baby. But as long as I’m breathing, I’ll always support my son and he’ll never be in a fight alone. 😊✊🏾👍🏾 05 || ²2 || ¹7 ( Fox News, Daily, ABC News, have posted about it or did an article on his story). . . . #tloce #thelifeofchaceelijah #niafa #neverinafightalone . . #congenitalheartdefect #chdwarrior #chdawareness #chdsurvivor #heartdefect #heartwarrior #heartsurgery #chd #tetralogyoffallot #clothdiapers #openheartsurgery #tof #smib #pha #gtube #feedingtubeawareness #openheartsurgery #childernshospital #daddyduties
The loving dad said he taped the tube to himself and snapped the photo to make his son feel normal. In fact, when Chace asks why he has a feeding tube and other kids don’t, he tells him that his “feeding port and chest scar give him super powers,” according to Inside Edition. Unfortunately, Chace may need to have a third open heart surgery when he get’s older, but they will cross that bridge when it comes.
“He’s my first and only son,” Robert said. “For him to come out with a heart defect, it makes me feel a little bit different. I’d love him no matter what because he’s my son. But I just love him more” because of his imperfect heart.
Robert is thankful for all the support and kind comments he’s received from strangers since the post. It’s always comforting to know that you’re not alone and people do care about your struggles, regardless whether they’ve personally experienced it or not. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute says the heart defect occurs in about five of every 10,000 babies.
Although Chace may not realize it, he undoubtedly gave a little bit of hope to other kids who are feeling alone in their health struggles. If there was anything the world could agree on, it is the fact that children shouldn’t have to suffer. He is a lucky boy to have a father who will do anything to make him feel like a little “super hero,” which is exactly what every little boy deserves.