A serious heart defect; a sentence that causes many sleepless nights. This verdict was placed on Gabrysia, our beloved daughter, our child. She is safe at the moment, but as soon as she comes into the world, she will start dying. Only surgery can save her. Instead of starting her life calmly, our daughter will have to fight for it… There is not much time left – we have to be at the clinic at the end of August. We are begging you for your help, we need you to save Gabrysia! So that she is safe in our arms and not in the arms of death!
30th January 2019 – one of the most important dates in our lives. On that day, we found out that for the second time, we will become parents. We were very happy that our family will grow. This happiness was bursting our hearts… little did we know, our world would be revolving around a heart soon.
The doctor set up a pregnancy card, and ordered a prenatal examination. We were not worried about anything. There were no bad thoughts, no worry, no suspicions – because why would there be? We already had one healthy daughter, there is no history of serious diseases in our family… We were convinced that the examination was only a formality. That we would return home as calm and happy as we left it.
Abnormal image of the heart… first suspicions, first worrying words. There was fear, but there was still hope. The doctor reassured us that the heart was still tiny. That you couldn’t see everything clearly. That the test better be repeated in a while. We were nervous when travelling for the next examination. We were still happy, but at the same time worried. The heart had grown, and it was now possible to examine it.
When we left the doctors room, we were different people. Within one hour, because that is how long the examination lasted – everything turned upside down. We found out that our little daughter had three heart diseases. It is not yet certain what diseases. It is not yet certain how ill our little baby will be, but what is certain, is that our baby’s life is at risk. As soon as she is born, she will be in grave danger.
What we heard from the doctor completely changed our lives. The well-known, sure and peaceful life ceased to exist in a fraction of a second. The joy disappeared and there was only fear… Another examination was booked to look at the genetics. It was an invasive diagnostic test. Despite our fears, we agreed to it, we wanted to be prepared and know what our baby will be facing. To give our baby a chance to have a chance at life. There were constant new questions in our heads. What’s next? How will our lives change? Will we be able to take care of a sick child? Genetic defects were not found. This was the first good news. It turned out that our baby will ‘only’ have a heart defect and that once again, we will have a girl.
Our little girl. Gabrysia. She will be born so fragile, vulnerable, sick. She will die without help. We cannot allow it! We can not let her down… We are her mother and father, we will do everything to protect her! We decided to turn our fear into hope, powerlessness into action, we started looking for a doctor who could save our daughter. We found out that he is not too far away, but just past our western border. In Munster, Germany, there is a clinic in which a Polish doctor works, he is one of the best in the world in treating such complex heart defects like the one of Gabrysia’s. HLHS – hypoplastic left heart syndrome, ventricular septal defect and coarctatio aortae. Professor Malec specialises in the treatment of such defects.
After visiting professor Malec, we know that we have a very difficult path ahead of us, but there is hope that Gabrysia will live! We found people with the same heart defect as our daughter. These children go to school, laugh, speak… they live! They are no different to healthy children… the key to success is a heart surgery, done quickly, by the best and most experienced doctors. Nobody can guarantee success. Nobody can promise that our daughter will survive, but we know that we must give her a chance. The best possible chance can be given to her by professor Malec.
The professor qualified Gabrysia to be treated at the University Clinic in Munster. It means that this is where our daughter must come into the world. We need money to pay for this treatment – which is now an obstacle in saving our baby. The amount we need to raise in such a short time is unimaginable to us. We do not want to give up, we do not even want to think about the lack of money that can affect our child’s life or death. We want to do everything we can so that Gabrysia can live.
Instead of counting down the days to her birth, we would happily stop the time… its running away and its working against us – the birth of our daughter cannot be postponed. Gabrysia will be born in September and then the real fight will begin. Please help us because we have been placed against the wall. We really want to see the first smile of our baby girl…