Sunday, March 2, 2008

A Happy Anniversary!

This is my babygirl, born almost six years ago. Today is special because when she was 22 months old, she had open heart surgery- and that was four years ago today. The first three years after her surgery I was very aware of each anniversary and I was sort of glad that this one slid in without too much noticing on my part. I think that when you go through something so altogether frightening with one of the humans you love the absolute most in this world, it takes awhile for those feelings to melt away. She was born with a hole in her heart that was diagnosed when she was about 10 months old. We were told to wait a year and see what happened as her body could grow and maybe it would shrink a little. The year after her initial diagnosis, it had grown so large that the wall of her two atrium was more hole than wall. She had started to breathe funny so I didn't really need to have the checkup to know things had not gotten any better. Shortly after that she had to have her surgery. There are things about the day that I will never forget. Feeling helpless, feeling so scared, that moment when the Dr. came to take her from me. That was the worst- handing her over, knowing they were going to fix here but knowing how they would fix her and being pretty mortified by the thought ofwhat they would do to her little body. The worst was she didn't know what was happening and her 22 month old brain wouldn't have understood so I tried to be brave until she couldn't see me but I could hear her cry all the way down the hall. But then when she was finally done, I remember feeling like I was floating because this big thing we had spent so much time thinking about was done and now she would just keep getting better. I think the most remarkable feeling I came away with was the realization that we were the lucky ones- she was better than new. We met some really nice people during our stay that didn't share in that good fortune. So we are sure to remember our friends over there- we have had a few toy drives, and movie drives and I volunteer when I can for their patient holiday party. Ultimately perspective is a good thing and this experience gave me a ton of it. She is great now- fast and tall and unstoppable. So Happy March 2nd to you all!

7 comments:

Bella Art Girl said...

thanks for sharing that..it was good to read...We too had a heart baby, a girl named Coco, she died of complications a few weeks after her surgery. Amazingly a year later we were blessed again with another baby girl who we named Wilder. As we have recently found out she too has some heart issues but to a much lesser degree. We too thank God for each day and enjoy what we have with new eyes. So, I send you warm blessings on the birthday of your daughter and thank you for sharing your journey.

Kimberly said...

You brought back many memories here! My daughter was born with multiple eye problems and we tried many things the doctor suggested for the first few years, but at 3 there was no way around surgery. I can still see her tiny body sitting in the big hospital bed, clutching a teddy bear to her chest. When they took her down to the OR, they gave her toys to play with until it was time to sedate her. They waited to do the IV then, and I was so happy. The worst part was in recovery. She didn't understand what was happening to her, she was patched on one eye, and she was screaming at the top of her lungs and trying to pull out her IV. She was crazed with fear and it took me over an hour to calm her down. That was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do as a mom.

Sorry for the long comment, but I appreciate and identify with your post. We didn't have as big of surgery as your daughter had, but surgery of any kind is so hard for little ones.

-kj said...

Yay for Maya!!!!!! YAY YAY YAY!!!!!!!!! : )

laurie said...

I can't imagine going thru something like this as a mother. My heart is happy that it all turned out well.

Lori said...

M is such an enthusiastic and wild young lady, you would never ever guess that she had open heart surgery at such a young age. You are a brave and strong Mommy, my dear.
Lori

carrie said...

I am so happy that your daughter is doing so well! We too had a heart baby (our second child) that passed away when she was five months old. Having a sick child is so scary and something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. Thanks for sharing your story. I am pregnant again and due in a few weeks and the fear that something bad is going to happen is always there but I pray that things will be great this time around. Happy birthday to your beautiful girl!

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