Tuesday, 1 June 2010

He is Alive

Today is a day I don't want to go through again for a long, long time.

My beautiful, wonderful four year old nephew has spent eight hours having surgery on his heart. He now has a goretex artery. He really only has one functioning chamber, and had his first op two years ago to help re- plumb him and keep him going until he was big enough for today to happen. His situation is extremely rare.

Over the past months he has been getting more tired, breathless and blue on a bad day. Oxygenated blood gets round his body more by luck than by design, hopefully today will change all of that.

It's so easy to forget he's not a normal wee boy. He is a cheeky monkey, who is learning his way in the world, obsessing about Ben Ten watches, demanding just one more story and refusing to eat certain things although he loves broccoli and asparagus! His 'go faster stripe' or 'zip' is, of course, a constant reminder.

He is the most important person in my world. I don't have kids, but I do have him. He lives round the corner and we see each other often. We have things that just he and I do together. We're growing a miniature garden at the moment. It would have been all tomatoes if he'd had his way. Instead there are beans, broccoli,carrots, potatoes, pumpkin and some ill looking radishes. And, tomatoes. We laugh and he hates snails. He gave me into trouble for throwing one into the next garden the other day. He reminded me that I should be 'nice and kind'. Sorry snail.

He is still intensive care, and being sedated over night. He has been in my thoughts, hopes and tears today. The dreadful thought of it all going wrong and the pain that he will be in when he wakes nagging me. The endless hours, minutes and seconds endured by my brother and his wife. The thoughts of eating his first home grown radishes and learning to like bugs keeping me going.

He is OK. He is not there yet, but he is strong. He will get through and we will all be right there beside him.

He is alive.


  1. My daughter was 5 months old when she had to have open heart surgery to correct heart defects, so I know all the fears and worries you face.

    But once corrected, it made a huge difference to Meg. Without it, she wouldn't ahve been expected to live beyond the age of 8 at the most. Now she's a happy healthy 12 year old.

    I'm sure this will do your nephew the world of good in the long term.

    Wishing you and him all the best :)

  2. Thanks Kim it's tough when they are so small. Meg is proof of all the trauma and upset being worth it. He'll get there. His oxygen levels are already higher than they've ever been, but still out and in intensive care. One step at a time....

  3. as is so often the case reading blogs of a personal nature; there are no useful words. just wanted to let you know that i had read. <3