History can be sketched out in several different ways. One method looks like a more or less straight line, each era moving forward inexorably before it gives way to the next, which continues with the same momentum. Or perhaps history inscribes a wheel, each epoch reenacting the same cycle. “All of this has happened before, and all of this will happen again,” as Battlestar Galactica‘s mythology has it. A third suggests circling but maybe—with each revolution—upward progress is made, creating a spiral.
I’m hopeful that our Newest Hale is spiraling upward. Yes, his aorta has experienced another narrowing (coarctation) of the sort which put him in grave danger at just 10 days old. This time it’s only 3 mm wide, instead of being the desired 7. Fortunately we’re at 3 months & change, with his preemie issues resolved & significant growth since our initial hospital stay, so surgery is not the only option. Early tomorrow morning, we’ll be back at Texas Children’s Heart Center for a procedure with their Cath Lab. Just like a grown human with circulatory issues, his aorta will be dilated with a balloon. He’ll likely stay overnight for observation and be discharged sometime Thursday.
For the long term, it is likely that he will continue to have issues with re-coarctation. We are hoping that this temporary solution might last years. If we can manage it, perhaps we can do several of these serially until he is old/big enough to have a stent put in that will permanently resolve this congenital heart condition. But we obviously don’t know what the future holds.
So, what do we need? Well, we have plenty of snacks & know where the coffee can be found. The older kids are staying with family, & we have some company while there already arranged, so no visitors please. If you’re the praying type, we can use all the prayers we can get! Compassionate & kind thoughts are always welcome. If something changes we’ll share that for sure. And if you’d like to help improve the situation for kids born in the future with congenital heart issues, then I’d suggest giving to the March of Dimes, like the Hales have been doing for several years now.
Thanks for all the support & prayers—see you on the other side!