February is a big month for hearts. Besides Valentine’s Day, it’s Heart Awareness month, Congenital Heart Awareness week (February 7-14) and National Organ Donor Day is February 14.
No parent ever imagined themselves in the Cardiac Critical Care Unit until it happens. No mom ever imagined to get a prescription for Lasix for her baby. No mom wants to watch her baby struggle to take a bottle because of rapid respiration. And certainly no parent ever imagined having to take that very long walk from their babies’ rooms to turn them over for open heart surgery.
Sadly, some CHD angels never made it to surgery.
These things happened to us and our stories don’t end there. Some of us will have to follow up with cardiologists throughout our child’s life. Future surgeries may be a possibility. And some of us are grieve.
Here are a few stories of CHD heroes.
We believe in miracles – the story of Lauren born with a malformed left ventricle and is doing very well post transplant.
Robby’s Story – Tetralogy of Fallot is four defects within the heart.
A New Heart – Beautiful baby Leah’s story.
From the Heart – In memory of Osias and how you can get involved in CHD
Our Heart Story – The CHD story of Eli and also that of his brother gone home to heaven too early from CHD
The CHD Blog: A Heart Mom’s story
Gwenyth Graham Carpenter – A CHD story
Nicolas’ Story – Our story. Down Syndrome and CHD
Want to help? There are lots of things you can do. Spread CHD awareness on social media channels. Donate blood. Support local 5Ks that raise money for CHD research.
Donate to organizations such as Mended Little Hearts, The Children’s Heart Foundation and Ronald McDonald House (we stayed there during the pacemaker surgery and can’t say enough good things about the hospitality we received.
You can read more stories at The Faces of CHD Pinterest board.
Congenital heart defects are every country’s #1 birth defect. Nearly one of every 100 babies is born with a CHD. Are you expecting or do you know someone who is? Be sure to ask for a pulse oximetry test if your state does not have legislation requiring the screening.