My son Liam was born on August 21 with very complex congenital heart disease that involve about 10 severe cardiac defects. During his first week of life, Liam required his first open heart operation where his skilled surgical team placed a shunt in his heart followed by a stent the next day to help improve his circulation. He spent the first five weeks of his life in the cardiac ICU in critical condition. More information on Liam’s story and recovery can be found at this blog we created for him: https://liamstrong.home.blog/our-story/
In the future, Liam will need a series of more open heart surgeries and other related procedures. His surgeries are palliative, not cures. It is currently January 2020 and in a few weeks he will have his next major open heart procedure, which will further help his heart, lungs, and overall circulation.
I have personally created this SleevesUp campaign because I recently found out that he received Red Cross blood products during his heart operation in August and throughout his recovery in the cardiac ICU. This is very meaningful to me because I was in a near fatal car accident when I was 18 years old and I also received 36 blood transfusions and 13 plasma treatments from the Red Cross. These blood products saved my life on multiple occasions during the 14 operations I underwent.
Now, 16 years later, my son is going through a very similar situation. It’s incredibly heartwarming to see the lifesaving role that blood products have played in my son’s survival during these major heart procedures and throughout his recovery.
As a blood donation advocate for the past 16 years, I’ve dedicated my life to helping raise awareness on the true importance of blood donation. From the past to the present – I’ve seen firsthand that blood donations are truly lifesaving and life giving.
I have created several SleevesUp pages in the past and they have all been special to me. This SleevesUp is a dedication to my son Liam and to celebrate his blood donors and everyone who has been following his journey.
My campaign goal is to reach 100 blood donation pledges. I chose 100 as the goal because nearly 1 in 100 babies (about 1 percent or 40,000 babies) is born with a heart defect in the United States each year.
Please help me in supporting this campaign and pledge to donate blood. By giving just a little bit of your time, you can help give somebody in need the chance at a lifetime.