When our son Noah was 3 weeks old he developed a constant cough. We took him to the doctor and it was discovered that he had a heart murmur. We then took him to the hospital for a chest XRay and learned that he was in heart failure. After following up with a pediatric cardiologist we got the diagnosis that Noah had two holes in his heart. His blood was shunting back and forth and this led to a fluid buildup which was drowning his heart and lungs (hence the cough). He had no energy, couldn't eat longer than 5 minutes so therefore couldn't gain weight, and was very jaundiced since he couldn't filter out the bilirubin. He had to use all of his chest muscles to breathe. His body just couldn't function. This is Noah at 8 weeks old - right around Christmas. He looked like a sick, little, old man.
When Noah was 11 weeks old we had to make the hardest decision of our lives. Even though he had been on multiple medications to deal with the heart failure, and high calorie formula to help him gain weight, he stopped growing and we were at a crossroads. We decided it was time to admit him for open heart surgery to repair the two holes. Out of all of the Denver area hospitals that he could have gone, we chose The Children's Hospital. And it was the best decision that we could have made.
Noah was in surgery and out of our arms for 5 hours. It was the longest, most excrutiating time that we've ever gone through. Giving him up to the operating team almost tore out our souls. All we could think of was going home empty handed after having this blessed little person in our lives for only 11 weeks.
Noah did well and progressed rapidly. He spent a week in the hospital with the best of care and surrounded by family. But most of our story is just now beginning...............