Friday, December 5, 2014

My Daughter's Heart...

My daughter Hailey has a heart of gold! She is loving and compassionate. My daughter's heart is warm, thoughtful and amazing. To look at Hailey you'd say, "She's doing SO well!" I've heard that about 10 times this week and that makes the news I am about to share harder to say.

I received a phone call from Hailey's cardiologist regarding her holter monitor results from a few weeks ago. Hailey was in therapy and the waiting room was empty and it was cold outside so I answered the phone expecting the same results we hear every 6 months, that we will continue to monitor Hailey's 2nd degree heart block.

That wasn't the news I received. The cardiologist said, Mrs. Gaston, I really think it's time to place a pace maker on Hailey's heart. She has gone from a 2nd degree heart block to a complete heart block in 6 months. Her heart stops beating several times throughout the day. This needs to be done within the next few months.

I think MY heart stopped beating for a moment. I felt this heat come over me and I felt when my heart started beating again. I felt a jolt. I didn't want to start crying just in case Hailey came out early but I kept blinking back my tears.

My daughter's heart isn't working. My daughter's heart needs help.

She's had surgeries before and they have all set her back and she has regressed with each one. The last time she had surgery it was like all her symptoms of Leukodystrophy fast forwarded. She stopped talking, walking, she couldn't even lift her arm to scratch her nose, she couldn't swallow.

There is a lot that went through my head. We'll have to set up "Home" in Salt Lake City for a bit. Hailey will miss a lot of school. Recovery may be difficult if we have to stop all her therapies. It'll be SO cold in Salt Lake, there is a risk of infection. Hailey will have her arm in a sling to restrict movement on her left side. She'll be scared, confused, and in PAIN and I don't want that for her!

I know I should take Josh's advice and don't think about what you MIGHT have to worry about. Worry about what you need to when it's time. He keeps me calm.

With Christmas coming up and more people that will see Hailey I know they will say, "Look how great she's doing!" and I will nod and agree, but I will look at her heart and know that not all is well with Hailey.

I love Hailey's heart, it's better then my heart and while I may be over emotional over a simple procedure that will hopefully provide a "less dangerous" life for Hailey, it is a lot for me to process. I always try and tell myself, "it could be so much worse!" to try and get past the "why Hailey?" Even now knowing that Hailey's heart has the complete block we've been thankful we haven't seen some of the symptoms of a heart block. But it also makes believing Hailey's heart having issues is real.

A lot has happened this year and so many things have been so WONDERFUL that I need to try to roll with the punches. I'll give Hailey what she needs, I'll be there after the surgery, I'll be there through her recovery. I'll learn how to care for her with a pace maker on her heart even though I don't think I have any more room in my brain to learn anything else. It almost feels as if my life changes as soon as I get comfortable with where Hailey is at, so I don't know why I'm so surprised.

In the mean time while we wait on more information about when this will take place questions that the cardiologist needs to ask a neurologist will need to happen and then we will have to weigh the pros and cons. I'm thinking Hailey will need an MRI soon. Ultimately I'm not in charge. Yes we can say if we want the surgery or not, but that doesn't really seem like a question. If my daughter's heart needs help and surgery can help, then we do the surgery. I know PCMC is a good hospital and her team of medical staff is great and she'll be in good hands, but it will always be difficult to hand my daughter over.

We will keep everyone up to date with new news as it comes in. In the mean time we have Christmas to get ready for! Hailey loves Christmas music and Christmas lights and we are excited to get to share those things with her.

As always I am thankful to those who read this blog and hear my thoughts and offer support. It's still odd to me that this blog started out as my diary and only I knew my thoughts. Now that it's open to the world and I'm sharing all of this with all of you I don't feel as lonely. I appreciate that even if I don't always say it.

When I get emotional and teary I think back to when we were in Salt Lake in 2012 and the Neurologist told us about Leukodystrophy and how it was terminal and how I constantly cried, Hailey would grab my hand and say, "mommy, don't cry! Be happy like ME!" She is such a smart girl with a beautiful heart!

I love my daughter's heart!