Happy Five Years To Our Shining Light

August 25, 2018 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant 0 Comments

August 21st marked five years since Rini Ann Yongling became our daughter. We had spent the previous three days in the shadowlands while our agency’s staff, both stateside and in China, worked feverishly on our behalf. The “begging letter”, as I named it, which I had been given an hour to compose the night after …Read More

“Will Adoption Be Good For My Kids?”

April 15, 2018 complex heart defect, double outlet right ventricle, Heart System, heart transplant, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, large families, Lifelong needs, Megan V., older child adoption, siblings 1 Comments

As I type, I’m sitting still in a sun puddle, watching my 12 year old take Abe’s blood pressure because we are at nearly 10,000 feet elevation on a ski vacation and his heart is faltering as it is, even without the elevation change putting undue stress on his valves. And this is a monitoring …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 16

November 5, 2017 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 2 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 15

October 27, 2017 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease 2 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 14

October 15, 2017 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 13

October 8, 2017 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 12

September 27, 2017 A Life Donated, Andrea O., end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 11

September 16, 2017 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 2 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 10

September 5, 2017 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 3 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 9

August 28, 2017 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 8

August 20, 2017 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, hospital stays, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 7

August 15, 2017 A Life Donated, advanced heart failure, Andrea O., complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 6

August 3, 2017 A Life Donated, Andrea O., complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 5

July 27, 2017 A Life Donated, Andrea O., complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 4

July 11, 2017 A Life Donated, Andrea O., complex heart defects, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 3

June 27, 2017 A Life Donated, Andrea O., complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 0 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 2

June 8, 2017 A Life Donated, Andrea O., complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 2 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

A Life Donated: Part 1

May 27, 2017 A Life Donated, Andrea O., end stage cardiac disease, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease, terminal diagnosis 2 Comments

Rini, our youngest of six children, was adopted in August of 2013 at end stage heart failure stemming from complex, single ventricle congenital heart disease. She was admitted to the hospital immediately upon arrival home and within two weeks it was determined that she was inoperable, her only hope would come through cardiac transplant. She …Read More

Wisdom for Enduring Extended Hospital Stays

February 27, 2017 advanced heart failure, Andrea O., complex heart defect, February 2017 Feature - Preparing Your Child for Medical Interventions, heart transplant, hospital stays, Little Hearts Medical, Medical Momma, surgery 0 Comments

When we arrived home with our youngest daughter and fourth CHD child, Rini, in August of 2013, my definition of a long hospital stay was three weeks. When my husband dropped us off at the entrance of the children’s hospital’s Emergency Department straight from the airport, little did I know that my definition of an …Read More

The Ledge

November 27, 2016 advanced heart failure, Andrea O., complex heart defect, complex heart defects, Heart System, heart transplant 3 Comments

On November 11, 2013, our 24 month old daughter was in the Cardiac ICU, on the national transplant waiting list, and on ECMO life support due to end stage heart failure. The following day, we would learn that she would receive the gift of life through cardiac transplant. During that tumultuous time, I had many …Read More

Dear Younger Me, Let Your Heart be Broken

July 28, 2016 adopting a boy, adopting again, Andrea O., heart transplant, July 2016 Feature - Dear Younger Me, Little Hearts Medical, surgery 6 Comments

Hey there, shadow of myself. Yes, I’m talking to you, the woman who is spending countless hours picking out the perfect color for the walls of the nursery where, in a few months, you will rock your “healthy, as young as possible” baby girl from China. I’m smiling right now, thinking of the woman I …Read More

Cardiac Transplant: part two

February 16, 2015 advanced heart failure, complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, Family Stories, February 2015 Feature, February 2015 Feature - Heart, heart defect, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease 0 Comments

This is the second half of a two-part post written by two mamas who have walked a similar – and yet very different – path. Both of their daughters, adopted from China with complex heart defects, required what most parents would consider a worst case scenario: a cardiac transplant. Each shares their experience below. Andrea, …Read More

Cardiac Transplant: Two Little Girls, Two New Lives

February 9, 2015 advanced heart failure, complex heart defect, end stage cardiac disease, Family Stories, February 2015 Feature, February 2015 Feature - Heart, heart defect, heart transplant, single ventricle heart disease 0 Comments

February is Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Month, so this month we will be featuring several posts from moms parenting children with heart defects. Our goal is to inform and equip those considering or home with children with this special need by sharing the real-life experiences of those already parenting a child with a CHD. This …Read More

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