Valentine's conjures images of heart and flowers, love and romance.
For me, this year, it brings up lots of thoughts about hearts. Cora's heart, to be specific. Today is the last day of Congenital Heart Defect week, and I'd be lying if I didn't say that this subject is one that is now very close to my own heart.
My little beauty was born with a significant heart defect and was born in heart failure. From the time of her birth until her much-anticipated open heart surgery at 11-1/2 weeks old, it was a time of stress, worry, and struggle to get her big enough and strong enough to make it through surgery. Because her heart had to work so hard, she could barely eat, and had to be fed largely through a tube in her nose. We gradually watched her grow weak, pale, listless and sweaty, watched her develop reflux so severe that people who saw her would blanch and turn pale themselves before turning away.
Today, Cora's heart defect is really just a memory. Thanks to the skilled hands of her surgeon and his amazing team, she now has a scar on her chest (which she will gladly show you if you ask), a mild murmur, and a return appointment for a check-up in three years.
To be spared the worry about that sweet little ticker is something that I am truly grateful for.
Next week we'll be going to have a peek at our newest little girlie's developing heart, and are hoping that all checks out well. While we are so lucky that most heart defects are treatable today, it is a stress that no parent wishes upon their child.
So on this Valentine's Day, I send out my thanks to all the people who helped fix my Cora girl's tiny heart. And I send my love to my sweet girl, and the rest of the loves in my life.
Happy Valentine's Day.