It was May, 2015. I was 21 weeks pregnant. My husband Anton and I were about to find out if our baby was a boy or a girl. At the hospital, we found out, instead, that our unborn child had a heart problem.
The news came as a shock, and we were totally broken. I’ll never forget that day in May.
The day after the ultrasound, Anton and I met the Children’s cardiologist, Dr. Tiscar Cavalle. She spoke to us about the severity of our baby’s disease. But above all, she reassured us, and told us there was hope for him.
Evan was born at 39 weeks, a big, beautiful baby who seemed perfectly healthy. We were overjoyed, but our relief was short-lived. Evan had a hole in the wall separating his heart’s ventricles and only his right ventricle functioned.
At just six days old, he started suffering from severe arrhythmia. At 17 days, our baby underwent his first open-heart surgery. Such a big surgery for such a little boy!
While the surgery was essential, it came with very real risks. Our son could experience serious complications, or worse, he could die. Coming face to face with these possibilities was torture. We felt powerless and terrified.
That’s when his father and I had our first conversation about organ donation. We wanted to have a plan in case our baby didn’t make it. We knew the grief would be crushing, and that it would be impossible to think clearly. It was the most difficult conversation of our lives...
Luckily, the expertise and care shown by our surgeon, Dr. Christo Tchervenkov, and his team calmed our fears. With every surgery, we knew Evan was in the best possible hands.
Because of his fragile health, our boy had several long stays in the Children’s Cardiology Division, where over 4,000 children suffering from heart disease are treated each year.
And it’s thanks to your generosity that these children have access to new therapies and technologies, allowing over 90% of them to survive and aspire to a normal life. That’s our biggest wish for Evan.
The Children’s saved his life. And you did too.
You allowed the Children’s to provide expert care and attract incredibly talented specialists, such as Dr. Tchervenkov and Dr. Cavalle, the same doctors who gave our boy a chance to beat the odds.
Caring people like you have the power to ease the difficult struggle children like Evan must go through to aspire to a normal life.
Our boy’s heart doesn’t work perfectly, but for now, he’s in stable condition. Your invaluable support for the Children’s and its innovations gives us hope that he will get better one day.
Although he’s undergone three open-heart surgeries, Evan has never lost his beautiful smile. Our big four-year-old boy is a real fighter.
Please give today, so that young patients like Evan can be kids, and have a chance at a bright future.
- Kimberly and Anton, Evan’s proud parents