Not So Wordless Wednesday {Cora’s Story}

Today I’m using my Wordless Wednesday for something completely different, as you guys know I’m on twitter and that’s where I met Kristine, Cora’s Mom, a woman who has experienced something no mother should have too, losing her child. In case you haven’t heard about Kristine, Cora and CHD I think it’s time you do.

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When our children are newborns, we fret over their every cough, worry about things like SIDS, and research the latest on vaccines and screening. We’re bombarded with marketing messages, from not-for-profit and for profit companies alike, telling us what to do, what not do and sometimes the messages even contradict each other.
I know as a new mom, it’s really hard to hear about the horror stories. To learn that for some parents, the over worrying isn’t exaggerated. I’ve lived through the worst nightmare a mom can experience. My newborn died. In my arms. Unexpectedly. Suddenly. We thought she was perfectly healthy.
I’ve started a mission to save and improve lives. I don’t want to scare moms. Don’t want to run a fear campaign. I just want to talk to you one-on-one through blog posts like this. (Thank you sooooo much Christa for inviting me to do so!)
My daughter died of the MOST common birth defect, occurring in 1 in 100 babies. While pregnant, I read everything I could get my hands on, but nothing about this ever came up. I learned about congenital heart defects, or CHD, from the coroner. 
I started a non-profit for my daughter, Cora, so that no other mother finds out this way. Cora’s Story is volunteer driven now and we’re in the early stages of launch, but we hope to save a lot of lives. 
Congenital heart defects are a broad label pretty much meaning any sort of defect of the heart present since birth. There are at least 35 types, some think there are more than 40. And, the face of CHD varies. If your child is 1 in 100, know that many live with a CHD and become Olympians, doctors, and live normal lives. But, early detection is key.
Watch for signs of a heart defect in your newborn. I wrote a letter with those signs and symptoms and also included information about screening for CHD with pulse oximetry. If you’re pregnant, or have an infant, please take a moment to read. 
Cora’s Story is immensely sad. Sad enough that you might want to click away from the blog post and forget about it forever, but with your help, Cora’s love and beauty can spread. She saves lives now.

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On the 30th of every month Kristine and her husband invite you to wear pink and do something special for someone else. Maybe buying the person behind you’s coffee, donating money to your favorite charity, helping an elderly neighbor or a new mom. Or telling a pregnant mom about the pulse oximetry test and why it’s so important. Tell them about Cora and how she’s saving lives now!

What good deed will you do on the 30th? We’d love to hear your ideas and suggestions!

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