Kimble’s Story

During my routine 20 week gestational ultrasound when I was pregnant with my 5th baby, I was told that I would need to come back and have the baby’s heart and kidneys reevaluated.  A few weeks later, after another ultrasound, I was told that “there could be something there, and we’d like to know for sure” and I was scheduled for another ultrasound two days later, only this time, the Perinatologist and Cardiologist would be there to check things out.
At that ultrasound, it was confirmed that my baby had some serious heart defects, later diagnosed as Pulmonary Valve Atresia, Right Ventricle Hypoplasia, and Tricuspid Valve Hypoplasia/Astresia, which basically meant that my baby’s whole right side of the heart could not function as it should.  What stuck with me, was that my baby would not survive after birth without immediate intervention, as well as multiple surgeries, but that they were already coming up with a plan on how to help his heart function the best possible way.  I was told to relax and enjoy the remainder of my pregnancy.
That may have been hard to do, but I really did enjoy the rest of my pregnancy.  I cherished the time that he was safe and thriving inside me.  I prepared myself and my family for all the possible outcomes.  I planned and researched what life would be like with a baby in the ICU.  I arranged for my mom to come stay with my other kids for the month after his birth.  In short, I am so grateful that I had those three months to prepare me physically, mentally, and spiritually, for all the difficulties that lay ahead.
When I was 38 weeks pregnant, I was induced, and I delivered Kimble safely and without any difficulties.  He was immediately taken to the NICU where they started him on Prostaglandin, which kept the PDA open and allowed for enough blood to reach his lungs to be oxygenated.  After a day or two, Kimble was transferred to The Children’s Hospital, right across the street from where I delivered him, and there, he spent the next (almost) five weeks undergoing many procedures.

Kimble had his pulmonary valve “ballooned” through, multiple Cath Lab procedures, an open heart surgery to place a BT Shunt, as well as undergoing emergency surgery just three hours after they placed the Shunt, and a very, very rocky recovery following his surgeries.  He also had swelling around his heart that had to be drained about a week after his surgery, as well as an infection that needed to be treated.  All in all, Kimble had a terribly rough start to life.

However, just shy of five weeks, Kimble was discharged from the hospital and we got to go home and introduce him to his brothers and sisters.  Since coming home, Kimble has been a champ at putting on weight, as well as being the center of our universe.

Kimble’s road to recovery has only begun.  He will have another surgery in June, called The Glenn, to reroute bloodflow directly to his lungs, bypassing his right heart.  After that, Kimble will most likely need an additional heart surgery when he is between 2-4 years old.



Kimble also has a cleft lip, which will be reparied via surgery in May.

 Edited to add:  Kimble had his cleft lip repaired, and it looks fantastic!  In June, he had the Glenn surgery, and it couldn’t have gone better.  Kimble is doing great!



  1. Hi! I am Chance’s aunt and am so thrilled to hear about Chance’s buddy and how well he is doing. Giving blankets in so heartfelt. What special families and the links between you!

  2. you guys are so great. i am proud of you all.

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