Monday, July 27, 2015
We will see you again.
Earlier this year I heard about the Dream Fund's event Wings for an Angel, and I loved the idea so much that I decided we needed to honour some of the angels who have touched our lives. Wings for an Angel is a province-wide butterfly release that gives you the oppourtunity to honour someone - alive or deceased. In our case we honoured 5 individuals - 3 heart warriors, the baby that I lost in 2012, and Mark Jackman.
In our journey with Jake's congenital heart defect we have met so many families who have been touched by this monster. CHD is the number one killer of children before their first year of age - did you know that? More children die from CHD's each year than from all types of childhood cancer combined. So I thought with this butterfly release, and the honouring of 3 of the babies we met who have passed away because of CHD related illness that this would an opportunity to have those children remembered - because I know that their families want their names said, and their stories told. These paragraphs and pictures will not do justice to their beautiful lives, but it will touch on their strength and courage and absolute beauty. The world needs to know these stories - CHD needs more research and funding. Please whisper a prayer for these families, and remember these beautiful faces with them - their bodies are now whole and there is no more pain for them, but their absence leaves a hole in the hearts of their families.
Ava Samatha Grace or “Birdy” as her family like to call her - was born December 4, 2012. She was born with a severe congenital heart defect called hypo-plastic left heart, where only the right side of her heart was viable and working. She had open heart surgery at 2 days old, but by the time she was 6 months old her heart was failing and it was clear she was going to need a heart transplant. She was put on the transplant list, but two months later, on August 15, 2013, Ava flew home to heaven where God welcomed her with open arms and gave her a new heart, and a new body that would never perish or fade. Ava is sadly missed, but she was such a gift and blessing from God that now all we can do is be thankful for the time that we had with her, and for what she taught us. Her family knows that they will never forget her.
Gideon, which means Mighty Warrior, was born with a congenital heart defect February 25, 2014 and lost his battle May 7, 2015 after 11 surgeries (four of which were open heart) and spending his entire life in hospital. Gideon received many blood transfusions over the course of his life and with a whole bunch of help his mom would like to give back. Each day blood donations help save lives. Please consider donating in honour of Gideon and help save a life. To donate, make an appointment with Canadian Blood Services and give them the number INHO368016 before you make your donation then it will count towards Gideon's Mother's goal of 409 units of donated blood by the end of 2015. Join his page The Mighty Warrior Blood Drive on Facebook to show your support!
Gabriel was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome which means the left side of his heart did not develop... along with this complication the heart tried to compensate building extra routes to transport blood from the other side of the heart. Although it tried to complete itself... it in fact made more complications by forcing too much blood to one area of the heart. Gabriel was 11 months old when he lost the fight and went to heaven.
At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
Rest in peace little ones, inside the fold of God's loving arms.
Ava, Gideon, Gabriel, Baby Anstey and Mark. We will see you again.