Culture, Reviews

“My Heart Warrior” In Review

My Heart Warrior

You may remember a while back when I published a pre-post about “My Heart Warrior: Living with HLHS Through a Father’s Eyes“. Well…my copy of the book came in the mail (I ordered it through Amazon) and so I wanted to take a little bit of time today to discuss my thoughts on it. At just under 60 pages, it’s a really fast read but it’s also a book that you could easily take one step at a time depending on your preference.

I feel like I should mention that, because of my close relationship with the author, it is not possible for me to read this book from a detached and impersonal perspective. As I read each word, I could hear Mike’s voice telling me the story and I felt deeply touched having watched them go down this road with Aaron. My husband, C, and I had the opportunity to meet baby Aaron at Duke University Children’s Hospital in March when we went out to North Carolina for my brother’s wedding. He was such a stong, amazing little man and I know that his short life impacted everyone around him. Stories like this need to be shared.

All too often parents who are dealing with medical tragedies feel alone, isolated from the world, and unable to find peace. Even with the organizations that do their best to reach out to families, I feel like there could always be more support. There is comfort in community and knowing that you’re not alone when you find yourself faced with circumstances beyond your control.

Mike’s journey with Aaron conveys a message of strength and of love. It’s a deeply emotional telling of their experience together as a family and it’s something I think we can all benefit from hearing. It’s just as much about the roller coaster of medical issues that Aaron faced as it is about the ability to find some sort of peace in spite of it.

The book follows their path from before they discovered they were expecting baby Aaron, through the pregnancy (when they were told of Aaron’s condition), and into his life here on Earth. I admire both Mike and Gloria for their courage, strength, and their desire to share Aaron’s journey to help improve the lives of those around them.

For more information on this book or for more information about HLHS, please visit the My Heart Warrior website.

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“My Heart Warrior” A Pre-Post

My Heart Warrior

I recently ordered a book written by a good friend of mine from college. I am planning to do a book review post next month after I’ve had time to read it but I thought that it was important to spend some time today giving a brief back story on why the book was written in the first place.

Mike and his wife Gloria welcomed baby Aaron into the world in November 2011. Aaron was born with a rare congenital heart defect called Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS). What that basically means is that the left ventricle of Aaron’s heart was not developed. When an infant is diagnosed with HLHS, surgical intervention becomes a necessary requirement in an attempt to prolong the child’s life. Even with surgical management, survival is not guaranteed.

Aaron, his family, and his medical team at Duke Children’s Hospital in Durham, North Carolina, fought so hard for his survival but, unfortunately, he lost the battle in May 2012, on his six month birthday. This devastating loss inspired Mike to write a book, “My Heart Warrior: Living with HLHS Through a Father’s Eyes”. It outlines and documents their experience with baby Aaron.

I am confident that their story can help families touched by this heart wrenching condition and other medical issues. If you would like to read it along with me, you can purchase the book through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or directly from the publisher. I’ve included links for each of those below. They also have several products available for purchase through their website: My Heart Warrior.

Mike donates a significant percentage of the profits from each purchase to both the Ronald McDonald House of Durham, North Carolina, and to Duke Children’s Hospital Cardiology Department, who provided so much support during Aaron’s care. Your purchase will help families dealing with medical crisis in the Raleigh/Durham area.

BookLocker Publisher (Available both electronically and on paperback)