Mended Hearts Open Forum

Expand all | Collapse all

Upcoming Surgery

  • 1.  Upcoming Surgery

    Posted 06-02-2018 01:08
    Hello everyone! My daughter is scheduled to finally have the surgery she has been needed. Of course I am terrified and do not know exactly what to expect and I'm not too sure I want to know.

    I would like some advice on what all to take to the hospital for my husband, my self, our boys and our daughter she is 20 months old but still just a baby. Are there certain things we need to do or shouldn't do while we are at the hospital. The hospital is about 8 or 9 ours from where we live so we won't be able to run and get anything or do anything during this time. Advice and suggestions are very much appreciated.

    Thank you,

    Jessica Harvey


  • 2.  RE: Upcoming Surgery

    Posted 06-02-2018 14:51
    Dear Jessica,

    I want you to know our prayers are with you and your family. I am assumiong it is your 20 month old having the surgery. If so be sure she has her favorite and most special doll or bear or what ever her bedtime toy or animal is. That way when she is awake something familiar will be with her. Please be aware she will look worse than she really is right after surgery. It is a scarry sight to see IV lines and such going into your child, but be assured it is all there to help her feel better sooner.

    Be sure the boys have thae things necessary to keep them occupied as well. We had our kids pack one small backpac with all the books, games, etc they can fit into it to stay busy. Letting them pick their own stuff helped keep them out of our hair. :o)

    It may be difficult but I suggest you and your husband try to take turns staying with your daughter. You will both need to find time to rest and be with our boys as well. They may not ack like it, but they will feel the pressure as well. Do not be afraid to let them in on the details. Giving them information will help them and talking about it can help you as well.

    Do not be afraid of turning off your cell phone or only talking to your husband or sons during this time. Other family member might be able to help but sometimes they want to know more information than you have at a time when you feel least like talking to them. Tell them to leave you be until such time as you are ready to talk to them. They can wait! You, your husband and children must come first at this time. 

    You take care and God bless. I look forward to seeing a post in future and pray everything turns out well.


    Richard Short
    Chapter 395  

  • 3.  RE: Upcoming Surgery

    Posted 06-03-2018 14:00
    Dear Jessica, Sending healing thoughts for your daughter! Bring comfortable clothing for yourselves along with a light sweater- hospital temps can drive you crazy. check for nearby grocery/mass merchandise stores so you can pick up snacks for your family as needed. An ipad or electronic reader plus earphones are helpful to pass the time and to google unfamiliar terminology. Have a notebook on hand to take notes, record meds, and note the names of the many doctors and nurses coming and going. Bring photos of your home, family, pets to bring the familiar into an unfamiliar setting. Think of things that give your daughter comfort- a night light, special blankie, storybook or stuffed toy. Look forward to reading about your success!


  • 4.  RE: Upcoming Surgery

    Posted 06-04-2018 13:19


    My daughter had surgery at 9.5 months old for her pacemaker, while she was younger than your sweet girl, she LOVES books, so we had a tote bag full of her favorite books to pass the time. :) Since you little one is a little older and able to understand more, I suggest getting to know the Child Life Specialists at your hospital. They are AMAZING!!! Our son (and daughter) both have Complete Heart block, however our son has Cysts along his spine we have to have checked out via MRI-this last go around we had Child Life come in and it was phenomenal!  Our experience when he was 4 was awful, so we have now become to rely on Child Life to calm his nerves and make the procedure more fun and based on his likes and dislikes! I was in awe of the complete change in our experience and cannot say enough good things about that department! They can also help with your older boys as well. Rely on them and the department, they are GREAT! I stayed with our daughter round the clock and my husband would force me to go home and shower, i felt so guilty, but when i  came back i truly thanked him for making me go home and feel "normal" again with a shower and quick nap! Don't forget you're a mom and a woman, so take care of yourself too! It's hard leaving them, but you will return rejuvenated and refreshed ready to tend to her needs clear headed. 

    We packed for our daughter side snap onesies (i know yours is older, so maybe snap shirts Long sleeved), SOCKS, her favorite blanket, a stuffed lion (From MLH-which she named dory!) ha. i downloaded a rain app, but i wish i would've taken her sound machine, her sippy cup, we brought her brand of diapers-she has ultra sensitive skin and i wasn't about to risk a rash on top of healing, books, for myself i brought a thick blanket, pillow, ear buds, magazines, a book, journal, zip up sweatshirt, and a small bag of toiletries-she was moved to a private room with a shower attached, so the last day i didn't have to leave her side for more than the time it took to shower-so thankful! 

    We will be praying for you all! And keep us updated when you have a chance! Sending hugs and well wishes!

    Lydia Howard
    Clovis, CA
    Co-Leader MLH Fresno; Heart mom to 2
    (559) 917-2843

  • 5.  RE: Upcoming Surgery

    Posted 06-04-2018 15:48
    Your letter brought back memories from 12 years ago when our granddaughter had heart surgery for transposition of the major arteries at 2 days old.  Our daughter and family (2 year old brother) stayed at McDonald House since the cost of hotel/motel for six weeks was cost prohibitive.  What a blessing since the Ronald House was only a short block away from the hospital but it is set up for families with children. The two year old had a whole room of toys and games.
    My wife and I traveled 4 hours to the hospital every weekend to help out. Our daughter has mentioned several times how helpful it was when my wife and I took the two year old for the weekend.  During this time daughter had time for herself and could get stay at the hospital full time.

    Try and get as much help as you can.

    Our prayers are with you and yours.
    Doug Dypolt
    Chapter 299

  • 6.  RE: Upcoming Surgery

    Posted 06-05-2018 18:44
    I have also stayed at the Ronald McDonald house when my daughter had surgery, these people are so helpful and kind

    vincent mahar
    Avonpark FL