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Be a Winner Like Baby Diva and Support the American Heart Association!!!


Help us continue our lifesaving efforts against heart disease and stroke by giving today.

Total Number of Gifts: 19
Total Value of Gifts: $847.00

Recent Donors

The Moore Family - $25.00

In memory of Doris Bersin

Evelyn Mandell

SJ Sales Admin Team - $50.00

In memory of Micah Griffin

Joseph Distasi

Happy Panda - $100.00

Anonymous - $100.00

Jess - $50.00

Anonymous

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About Congenital Heart Defects

Heart defects are among the most common birth defects--approximately 40,000 babies (1-2%) in the United States are born each year with a heart defect--and they are the leading cause of defect-related infant death.

One of the most inspiring things about raising awareness and funds is that I have had the opportunity to hear the stories of other heart babies, some of whom will need more surgeries to survive.

Why We NEED Your Donation.

Despite how relatively common CHDs are, there is comparatively little funding going into researching the causes of these defects and treatment options.

That's where the AHA comes in.

More research is needed. Some heart defects are caused by Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) or known genetic conditions, such as partial deletion of a chromosome. Others, like Baby Diva's defect has no known cause.

Some cases, like Baby Diva, will need a follow up operation to replace a valve. Great strides are being made that may mean this follow up will be a less invasive procedure, rather than another open heart surgery. Some research even suggests we will be able to create a valve from the baby's own cells, which will grow

Some fatal conditions do not have the same high operation success rates.

Some babies will never get an operation and will never reach their first birthday.

Baby Diva's Story

After a long labor that came perilously close to a desperate, emergency c-section, my perfect little one entered the world on August 9, 2006.

She had ten fingers, ten toes, and, despite the nurse's warning that after such an exhausting birth she might not be ready to nurse, a voracious hunger.

They placed her on my chest and she was still the exact temperature of my body. I could feel her need for me surging through her tiny body, along with the beating of her small heart.

She looked exactly how I had imagined her: pink, unblemished skin; smooth, even features; and wise eyes that whispered truths only a newborn can share.

Over the next few hours, as I bonded with my perfect baby, the doctors came to me with forced cheerfulness.

"A murmur, they explained, but no need to be concerned. Most likely it will be gone tomorrow."

"Still there, they apologized, but probably just a small hole that will close on its own."

"Babies with heart problems do not feed well and look blue," they said, and our baby was ravenous and a delightful shade of pink.

My husband had not yet arrived on leave from Iraq and I turned to my mother, "But she looks so perfect," I said.

"She is perfect," my mom replied. Of course, my mother is always right.

What follows is, perhaps, a story for another time. The short version involves a long drive to San Antonio on a hot August night and a longer drive back, heavy with a name: Tetralogy of Fallot.

In another time or place, this would be death sentence, but in this country in this era, it is a cause for great hope.

Our tale includes months of struggling to keep a colicky baby calm, battling with pediatricians, and praying for the survival of both of the loves of my life. Drawing to a climax with an open heart operation in her third month of life and denouement of the joyous reunion of our, now whole, little family...with the cliffhanger of a removed valve and a likely future operation.

On November 6, 2006, Baby Diva had a successful repair. She is missing her pulmonary valve, but otherwise is heart healthy.

This website was originally set up as part of the "Be a Winner Like Baby Diva" contest and awareness drive in August of 2007 (http://www.mamanista.com/2007/07/be-winner-like-baby-diva.html). http://Mamanista.com (http://mamanista.com) continues to donate a portion of its profits to charities each month.

More importantly, you'll help us to fill the hearts of other infants, the way Baby Diva has filled ours by donating today!!!

100% OF THE MONEY RAISED THROUGH THIS PAGE GOES TO THE AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION!!!

I am really sorry but I have had to shut down the guest book due to recent spam attacks. I have saved all the kind comments and hope the AHA will use a spam filter so I may reinstall the guest book.


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