As we enter this time of year, I receive a lot of messages from heart kid families sharing their stories and experiences – both heartbreaking and hopeful. I must confess, it’s a good time for reflection, and I am reminded of why our wonderful organisation exists.
And like many other stories I’ve heard, Freddie’s has touched me so much that I thought I would share it with you.
Freddie, 13 months
During an antenatal scan last year, Freddie’s mum Renee was told that he would be born with a heart defect.
“The day we found out about Freddie’s heart was the most devastating day of our lives, it just broke our hearts to hear that something was wrong with our precious baby’s heart.
I’ll never forget that feeling. An instant thought of is he going to die? Will he make it? Could I have prevented this? Either way, I knew my world was surely over.”
And just 9 days after being born, he needed open heart surgery.
Unfortunately Renee’s experience is too common, and thousands of families in Australia have gone through this heartache. Like you, we hope for a world unaffected by heart disease and until we find a cure, we aim to support every single heart kid that needs our help.
Bow tie Freddie!
Thankfully Freddie pulled through his surgery, and after some time recovering, he is now a bouncing 1 year old who loves running outside with his dogs Honey and Holly, and cuddles on the couch watching Sesame Street.
And although his doctors have said that he does have a tiny bit of pulmonary stenosis and very mild leakage (and will need ongoing check-ups throughout the year), his quality of life into the future is looking very positive.
Freddie’s ongoing story is a reminder that it’s not just about finding a cure for childhood heart disease, but also making sure that we continue to provide the hope and support our heart kid families currently need.
“HeartKids has helped Freddie and our family in so many ways, from giving us hope that things will be ok, to a shoulder to cry on when things were looking hard. They’ve created a beautiful heart kids community to connect with to share wonderful and inspiring heart stories. Support when you need it the most.
HeartKids means the world to me, the ongoing support and keeping heart parents up-to-date with everything is just incredible.”
With your help and support we will help these kids realise their potential.
– Simone Vollbon – HeartKids Family Support Coordinator