At the beginning of January, Mye DeLeon posted on her blog about the birth of her son and the struggles her family will be facing in the upcoming weeks and months. Having a baby should be the happiest moment in your life, but her happiness soon turned to tears as her son was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect. Alphonse has a defect called Tetralogy of Fallot, where there is a hole in his lower heart chambers causing him to not have enough oxygenated blood in his lungs and body.
This struck close to home for me as my cousin’s baby was born this past October with a life threatening heart defect too.
Matthew was born with two holes in his heart, Ventricular Septum Defect and Patent Foramen Ovale. As a result, he was being treated for congestive heart failure. Just saying that is overwhelming to me. Baby and congestive heart failure should never be said in the same sentence. Broke my heart.
After several doctor visits, hospital stays, x rays, EKGs and echocardiograms, they were told their newborn would absolutely need open heart surgery and the ideal time would be around 6-8 months.
They decided to get a second opinion.
After meeting with the doctor’s from Lurie Children Memorial Hospital, it was quickly determined that Matthew didn’t have months to wait. He was not thriving and was now in the 15% range for weight for his age. He needed surgery as soon as possible or he wouldn’t make it.
His surgery was scheduled for the following week – the day after Christmas.
I met Matthew for the first time on Christmas Eve at our family holiday party. He is so adorably cute! He looked like a little elf in his Christmas outfit.
The surgery went well and Matthew came home several days later and is recovering nicely. He is still adorably cute.
So when I heard about Mye’s situation, I wanted to help.
Charity Collaboration Kit
Over 100 digital scrapbook designers have gotten together to donate to a group charity collection called An Innocent Heart to raise money for Mye’s family. Her family lives in the Philippines and there is no medical insurance to cover the cost of the surgery. They were advised to have the surgery at a public hospital. They need to raise $12500 in order to get on the surgery schedule by Feb 1st. According to the doctor, the surgery must be done at 6 weeks old (the earliest) or 3months old (the latest). If not, the baby will not make it.
It’s a great feeling to be part of a community of women who jump right in when something like this happens to one of their own. There was such an outpouring of designer support in the digital scrapbook community, the charity kit quickly became unmanageable in size and designers were asked to cut their contributions. I didn’t want to do that.
Instead I decided to give away my contribution to help raise awareness (everyone loves a freebie, right?) and hopefully by giving you a direct link to Mye’s donation page along with a link to the charity kit, it would help Mye’s family.
So please, if you download my contribution, consider donating directly – even if only a few dollars.
(This freebie will only be available through Jan 31st)
I couldn’t help but scrap a few layouts of Matthew. He is so cute! This first photo was posted on Facebook the night before his surgery asking for prayers. “Pray for my Heart”
And you can’t just have a before layout… you need an after layout too with that precious smile just 3 DAYS AFTER OPEN HEART SURGERY!
If you like my layouts, you can grab the quickpages for free from my Facebook page.