Charlie's Story

Image Captured by Light on Paper Photography

Tiny light Charlie loves to play with crinkly toys, roll around on the floor, and play in his jolly jumper.  He also loves to eat!  His smile is infectious and despite the challenges he has faced in the first few months of his life, Charlie has remained strong and happy.

The day after he was born, Charlie’s doctor noticed a heart murmur, and testing revealed a Ventricular septal defect, anAtrial septal defect, as well as Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF).  These heart defects resulted in Charlie going into congestive heart failure shortly after he was born.  Initially, his parents were told that he would require surgery at approximately six months of age.  However, after ten weeks he had barely gained two pounds, even though he was on high calorie formula and a feeding tube.  It was determined that he would need surgery earlier than expected.  At just 12 weeks, surgeons repaired his heart, and the surgery was a success!  He is still small but should develop into a healthy little boy.  He will require yearly visits to the doctor until he is five years old, but should not require any further surgeries.

Charlie’s parents have some advice for others facing similar journeys: “Although it is incredibly hard and you don't know what is going to happen, you have to stay strong, do your research and be prepared.  Ask questions and find others who are going through the same thing.  Join groups for support and stay positive.”

Story by Emily Harrison