He was eventually found in a pond by his aunt and uncle alive but unresponsive.
Like many children who were victims of water accidents, Nicolas’s initial prognosis was not good, but his father, Russ, says each day the little boy is growing stronger and is making his way to a recovery.
“Everyday he gets a little better,” Russ said.
Nicolas was originally taken, via a life flight to Egleston Children's Hospital where he was put in the Intensive Care Unit.
“At first they were concerned about the swelling of his brain,” Russ said.
Nicolas was put under a 72-hour observation period to make sure no swelling occurred. Russ said the staff attributed that to the fact that the baby was found in cold water.
“They said the cool water is what slowed his body down, it prevented the swelling,” Russ said.
Nicolas did however, sustain damage to his basal ganglia, the portion of the brain that controls motor skills. However, this damage was minor in comparison to victims in similar situations.
“Nicolas has continued to show small miracles,” Russ said.
The baby was kept under a cooling blanket for several days, this allowed his body to heat back up to a normal temperature over a longer period of time. This was to prevent any further brain damage,
On Nov. 13 Nicolas was moved to Scottish Rite where he has undergone therapy.
“He didn’t get a break; they moved him right into therapy,” Russ said.
With the aide of the staff at Scottish Rite, and the support of his parents, Nicolas has been able to stand with assistance and has been tracking people with his eyes.
“I saw him move his eyes around the room as he watched this therapist,” Russ said.
While Russ says neurologists don’t like to make recovery predictions about children as young as Nicolas, but the family isn’t giving up hope.
“We believe it is up to Nicolas, and to God,” Russ said. “My wife, Sara and I are very thankful. We give all the glory to God. I truly believe all of this has been a miracle. The power of prayer has helped Nicolas defy the odds.”
Nicolas is expected to be released home the week before Christmas. Russ says being in a familiar environment with Nicolas’s three siblings will aide in his recovery.