Thanks for supporting heart warriors like me!
A message from my mom:
Raising funds for congenital heart defect (CHD) research is not only critically important to all babies born with, and children and adults living with CHDs, it is also personally meaningful to me.
On April 13, we went to - what I had been told was a precautionary - cardiology appointment. After an echo that seemed to last forever (3 Mickey Clubhouse episodes to be exact), the cardiologist turned to us and I knew immediately that our life was changing. I don't remember much more of that meeting. In less than an hour, we went from a normal Wednesday afternoon to a brand new reality. We were told our daughter, Maggie, had a congenital heart defect. A coarctation of her aorta. I don't think I will ever forget that moment. She would need surgery to repair it, and soon. By the time we drove home from the cardiologist, I was in contact with people at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland.
By 6 am the next morning, we were on our way to meet our surgical team. The next few days were a blur. We were quickly immersed into the heart world. Blood draws, echos, X-rays, heart rate, oxygen level, typical blood pressure for a ten month old, and Maggie's current blood pressure, which was too high for her little body.
I will never forget the nurses, nurse practitioners, doctors, surgeons, pharmacists, occupational and physical therapists, social workers, etc. who helped us navigate that first week.
Maggie had surgery four days later and it was an incredible success. Although she will spend time on medicine to lower her blood pressure and help her iron levels, we have a healthy, happy little girl!
By donating to help me reach my fundraising goal, you’re helping to fund the most promising research into CHDs - America’s most common birth defect. Although no parent wants to hear that their child has a CHD, we were lucky. "None of this feels routine to you right now, but it is as routine as heart surgery gets," I remember multiple people saying in those first few days. I am forever grateful for the knowledge of our nurses and pediatricians who first heard the murmur at her nine month appointment, the calm, reassuring, practiced demeanor of our cardiologist who first explained Maggie's CHD, and the skill and expertise of our team at Hopkins who fixed her heart. I'm hopeful that through continued CHD research, more parents will bring home healthy, happy babies.
Together we can make a life-saving difference! Thank you in advance for your support.
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