Meet Miss L.
L wants you to know that heroes come in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes big, sometimes little. Sometimes very little, with red hair and big, beautiful smiles that melt you.
L is a heart hero.
She is the baby of a wonderful family that I was able to photograph through Inspiration through Art, an organization that partners professional photographers with children facing serious illness. The photos are given, regardless of income, to families who are facing obstacles much bigger than finding a family photographer. But, ITA believes that these are the families that need portraits the most because in the craziness that surrounds an ill child, you forget. A lot. (I can attest to this!)
I will let L’s momma tell you L’s story:
“…I had a normal, healthy pregnancy and was talking to my doctor about inducing 2 weeks early due to Lauren’s size and the fact I have very fast labors. Little did we know little Lauren would make her own timeline! She might have been 4 weeks early and too fast for the doctor to get to the hospital, but she seemed to be a healthy baby coming in at 7.5 pounds. She was checked by the neonatologists and was given a clean bill of health. Later that day, however, the nurse mentioned she heard a heart murmur, but assured me that it was fine and that babies typically grew out of them. I heard that several more times that day and again when the doctor came the next morning to take her for her exam.”
“…But when she came back she said she was having a cardiologist come by, just to make sure. She was terribly wrong. Lauren had critical aortic valve stenosis and a deformed aortic valve. She was rushed to another hospital and had a balloon valvuloplasty at four days old. She has been holding steady since that time, but we have recently learned that her valve is leaking too much to perform another balloon.”
“…She will have to have open heart surgery within the next couple of years. She faces several in her lifetime and she will never have a “normal” heart. Lauren is just an angel. She makes everyone laugh and has smile that is contagious, and oh, that hair! She is incredibly smart (too smart for her own good sometimes) and has such a caring spirit. She is my heart warrior.”
I’ll tell you what… to meet L is to love her. She has touched my heart so, and will keep a steady spot in my prayers. We can all learn a lot from the tiniest heroes!
Categories: Inspiration through Art (Littlest Heroes)