A Mother’s Story — Raising An Infant With A Heart Defect: Part 6 Of 6

November 14, 2011


Our introduction into the amazing world of parenthood… and then our abrupt reality check in the form of a life-threatening congenital heart defect & the successful medical interventions taken at Texas Children’s Hospital which taught us to never take a day for granted. This is our story.

...continued from Part 5

How do you accept a miracle?

Current Photo of Zeyd on TricycleTo date, one of the most difficult parts of our whirlwind introduction into parenthood with a child born with a serious congenital heart defect is accepting this real miracle of Texas Children's Hospital, its employees, and the success of Zeyd’s surgery. There is a feeling of guilt that I have because I know not every child and family is so blessed to have this opportunity or access to high-quality health care and excellent physicians and staff as we are in Houston's Medical Center. I can never begin to truly express the gratitude I have for everyone who played a role during our stay, and other children’s stays, at Texas Children’s Hospital. I constantly think about our hospital stay. I imagine God guiding the hands of Dr. Jeffrey Heinle as he and his team worked on my son’s tiny little broken heart. I want so badly for these amazing people to know what they have done for us. Saying thank you is not enough, and that is difficult for me to accept. These amazing individuals are my angels. I do not mean that figuratively, I mean they are my real life angels and my saving grace. I daydream that someday I can make a dream come true for everyone who helped us. I worked as a nurse and I had people say how thankful they were before, and I never minded because I loved my job and I loved working and I truly enjoyed it, but it is different being on the receiving end of this kind of dependence on others for the future of my family. I know Texas Children's employees may think they are doing their jobs, but they are working miracle after miracle and saving lives, and more importantly, saving families.

Texas Children's Hospital, you have saved my family.

I hope every mother is blessed with the strength to get through the difficulties in a pregnancy and childbirth and be as natural, stress-free, and healthy as possible to promote a healthy pregnancy and childbirth. There are some events in life which happen, like my son’s heart condition, which could not have been prevented by my actions and I accept that, but when this did happen — I still felt better and almost relieved at how healthy I tried to be, and I think because of that, I did not allow me to blame myself for his heart defect, which unfortunately would have been easy to do as a parent.

My son’s life has been saved — I cannot give back what was given to me. I never want to forget the feeling of gratitude that is with me now, so I force myself to mentally and emotionally go back to the day I received news about Zeyd’s heart. I go back to our time in the hospital. I go back to the day that I handed my little baby to the anesthesiologist on the day he had open-heart surgery. I go back to the first time I saw him in the CVICU after his surgery and how scared I felt inside. I go back to the day I got to hold him for the first time after surgery and how gracious, happy and overjoyed I felt. I go back to the day of our discharge and how surreal it felt. And I cry and I cry and I cry, and I remember just what it felt like. I will not take one day for granted for the miracle I have received and I will not forgot what we have been blessed with because of Texas Children's Hospital. I think to myself often, what can I possibly do? How can I pay it forward? How can I give and be charitable? I want to be home with Zeyd right now, because I am the best person to care for him, but in the future I want to donate my time, or blood, or plasma, or help raise money to help make a difference in the life or lives of someone else, and I beg anyone able to do the same. Give if you are able, please.

To Potential Charitable Donors or Texas Children's Volunteers:

Unexpected tragedies happen all the time. People are fine one minute and the next minute they are in the biggest and most terrifying dilemma of their entire lives. It can be overwhelming and emotional and I just ask with everything good that I have in my heart, to those who are so blessed to be able to help others, please donate money, a single dollar or a million dollars to the Texas Children’s Care Fund to help children who are desperate for help. The Texas Children’s Care Fund is an amazing charity at Texas Children’s Hospital. There are children with better or worse prognosis than my son, who are in need, and many people need financial and other help to receive the high quality care that is offered at Texas Children's. I have a new passion in my life to try to make a difference to another child or children in need so other families can spend time and make memories with their loved ones as I have been so blessed to do. Please give. Please be charitable. There are so many children in need and we can all come together to make a difference. Please donate to this or any charity at Texas Children's or offer a tribute to in honor of every life which has been positively impacted by the amazing volunteers and employees working so hard every day of the year at Texas Children’s Hospital. Please volunteer your time. Please set time aside on your day off to go to a blood bank and donate blood or plasma and help save a life. Thank you for any and all contributions towards helping others, however it is that you choose to help. There is a higher power and these charitable deeds will not go unnoticed.

Thank you again with all of my heart.

Special thanks and unending gratitude goes to Dr. William Black, Dr. Shannon Rivenes, Dr. Heather Dickerson, Dr. Henri Justino, and the amazing Dr. Jeffrey Heinle, and to every amazing person working or helping at Texas Children's Hospital.

Thank you for caring.

The End.

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