A New Mothers Nightmare
Waiting for a grandchild to be born is such an exciting experience. My daughter was huge by the time she delivered her second son. Unlike the first grandson's birth, I did not get to witness the delivery as I was home taking care of the 2 year old.
After the delivery, I got the call, my new grandson Kyle came into the world at 11 pounds. My poor daughter had nothing for the delivery, no meds or painkillers.
Big Brother Meets Baby Brother
That afternoon, I dressed the two year old brother in a cute tee shirt which read "I'm the Big Brother" and off we went to the hospital. Mom looked great sitting in bed holding what looked like a four month old baby.
A couple of days later my daughter was very happy to know they were going home the next day. Later that night, I was in bed and I got a phone call and it was my daughter crying. She said she was getting discharged the next day but Kyle had to be transported to another hospital, an hour away. My daughter noticed his breathing wasn't right and no one at the hospital could figure out what was wrong and the head doctor decided it best to send him to a bigger hospital.
Ambulance Ride an Hour Away
Kyle was being transported to bigger hospital an hour away. We drove our cars there and Kyle was already in the baby unit when we arrived. After four days, the doctors here could not figure out the problems and told us he was being flown to another hospital three hours away which specialized in children and heart problems. His heart was beating so fast, we thought the bed had a motor in it.
Kyle was flown by helicopter and we traveled by car, so by the time we arrived at Hershey Medical Center, in Pennsylvania, he was in his new room again, this time with many other babies, with many different problems.
There were many doctors and nurses at Kyle's bedside when we got there. They did mention things they thought the problem was and we just had to wait. Lots of testing was being done. I went with my daughter and son-in-law to find a hotel as we were going to be staying there for awhile.
My husband came down on the weekend in our RV so he could make us some home cooked meals. It was good just to get out of the hospital and away from fast food places and sit in a place that was ours. You never realize how much you hate eating out morning, noon and night. We would just eat because we had to and my daughter just got out of the hospital and after having such a big baby she needed to keep up her strength.
Ronald McDonald House
We were at the hospital bright and early every day. There were lots of families, just like us, all wondering what was wrong with their little babies. The waiting room was wonderful in such a bad time, but there was always a kitchen that had food for any of the families. There were a few microwaves and computers so we could get in touch with our families. Everything was donated by the Ronald McDonald House.
There was a very large room that had nice comfy chairs that folded back so we could sleep there any time and a few times I was out cold in the middle of the room. You don't care what you look like in times like this and you get very worn out. We were all there feeling each others pain.
In the nursery where Kyle was, we saw babies dying and families just collapsing in grief. It was truly the worst time of my entire life. I had a 13 year old boy collapse right next to me when he found out his baby brother just died. I just held onto him.
Finally an Answer
After about the 3rd or 4th day, a heart specialist came in and talked to all of us and said he wanted to operate the next day. The problems could not all be fixed the same day so Kyle would have to have the first operation then and wait about a year for the next one.
We all felt confident as this doctor was world known and very respected, so Kyle had his first operation. This operation he fixed the Coarctation of the Aorta and a Pulmonary Band was put on.
Kyle went home the first time in his life when he was a month old. My daughter had not been home all this time either.
The second operation was about a year later, Kyle was about 15 months old. This time the operation was just like my husbands open heart surgery, with the cut down the middle of the chest. The doctor closed the ASD and took the pulmonary band off.
Two of the VSD's closed on their own and one is still slightly opened.
Right after the operation, we went into the recovery room and there were at least a dozen tiny babies that had been operated on and about half of them had the same scar as Kyle. Its so sad to see them all sleeping under heat lights.
Eleven Years Old
Kyle is now 11 years old and one of the greatest little boys. He use to be so depressed as he was not allowed to do any running or any sports, now he is trying everything, he wants to make up for lost time. He plays basketball, lacrosse, football and softball. He is in the school band and chorus.
He is still watched closely and we all know what to look for. He is not allowed to take certain medicines which leads to a problem some times.
Again this year, he is participating in the Hoops For Hearts sponsored by the American Heart Association. The children that participate in this are helping children affected by heart conditions and they are learning about their own hearts and how to stay healthy by getting physically active.
VSD stands for, ventricular septal defect, which is a heart malformation present at birth. A ventricular septal defect is a defect in the ventricular septum, the wall dividing the left and right ventricles of the heart.