I live in a semi-real world called The Heartland. I live in a heart home with my beautiful heart family. We are a heart mama, a heart dad, two heart healthy siblings and our miraculous HLHS heart warrior diva princess. Oh yes, there's a heart healthy cat.
Our heart home is filled with love and joy. Our heart healthy kids know too much about medicine and our miraculous heart warrior knew where her heart is before she knew where her toes are. Our diaper bag has diapers, wipes, a change of clothes, a pulse oximeter and EMLA cream. The other day, one of my kid's nose was running and when I dug my hand into my purse, I pulled out gauze.
My Facebook newsfeed is filled with silly Star Wars memes, ridiculous sanctimonious mothers trying to out-mother each other, pictures of cute kids, and life-or-death questions that are posted by fellow heart mamas.
Running out the door with my three kids consists of: checking that everyone is clothed, wearing season appropriate clothes, clothes on frontwards and not inside out (Thank you, Tzviel), hair and teeth brushed, possessions in hand, and no purple lips or finger nails.
This is The Heartland. You are sad to welcome a new family into your special broken-hearts club. But you are just as determined to help them adjust to their new life as quickly as possible. You frequently are introduced to fellow heart mamas and find that you hardly have to say two words without being instantly bonded together.
This bond is based on the deep extreme desire for each other's kid to do well. You see, each heart warrior's success affirms our hopes that our own kid can beat the odds. So we are completely invested in each other's family.
This past week one of my heart friends lost their baby boy. A few weeks back, Mechal had seen me crying after reading a discouraging post about this little boy. She asked what was wrong, so I told her. She asked if she could pray for him. Yes, pray for him. Can she put his name up on the board at school? Yes, have your class pray for him. So, she told me how she had prayed for him with her friends. That little boy is gone now and I had to have the worst talk with Mechal. Nine and a half year olds shouldn't have to know about babies dying.
This past week, my heart friend's daughter went for a heart catheter. Now that beautiful heart family is trying to cope with their little girl needing heart surgery soon.
This past week, another heart friend's son went for heart surgery. He struggled and needed to be revived twice by CPR. They begged for a miracle. Their community and the heart community embraced them with prayer. Finally, calm came and he stabilized. They are cautiously pushing forward and, please (please please please) G-d, will continue to recover well. Mechal asked why we dressed in red for him. So I told her about this little 6 year old boy that needed support and prayer. That's what she did. She prayed for him.
This is our heart world. It's a little different than the rest of the world. Thankfully, our heart home is also surrounded by hope and an enormous amount of love. That hope and love carries us through. Especially when pain is all around.