Riley with Transposition of the Great Arteries (TGA)

Riley’s mother talks about what it was like for her having a daughter born with a Congenital Heart Defect.

Hello my name is Angee and I am the proud mom of Riley, a CHD child. She was born late December 2008 with Transposition of the Great Arteries.

I had a normal pregnancy and she was born right on time. When she came into this world she was so lifeless. She was blue, not crying, and still in fetal position. They whisked her off saying it may be her lungs. About 30 minutes later, 3 doctors walk in and start talking about CHD and Transposition and all this stuff I had never heard. My heart broke. They wheeled me in to see her. She was so little on these medicines and IV’s and a ventilator. I got to hold her little hand until the ambulance came to take her to a Children’s Hospital.

I recieved a phone call that she would be going into surgery to keep the hole in her heart open to prolong her life until we could have open heart surgery. She was 8 hours old.

When I finally got out, I went to see her. I fell apart. Ventilators, all these monitors, medicine everywhere and I still couldn’t hold her or feed her. She opened her eyes the night her medical flight came in. She had the prettiest eyes!

We flew to DC at 3 days old. Due to her oxygen levels, they moved her surgery up. The night before, I remember I finally got to hold her. I sang, rocked, and told her everything about her family. The hardest part, giving her up to have surgery with the unthinkable happening. Surgery went well but no book or talk prepares you for what you see. Another ventilator, IV’s, central lines, chest tubes, blood transfusion machine, staples, swelling, the beeping, the doctors, and seeing your child like this.

Today I can say that she is my hero. She has taught me about faith, love, and triump over adversity. We have our days but God is amazing. I choose to use all of my spare time in spreading the word about CHD. I had no idea nor even heard about CHD until the day my daughter was born with one. My whole family has been affected in one way or another. I worry a lot and fear the future as to possible more surgerys, medicine, or whatever may come. I cherish each day and love my kids. God Bless.

Wrote by Angela Brock
February 2010

Angela Brock has given CHD-UK permission to use the photographs on this page.