Nora's Heart of Gold Fund

Little Nora Jeanne was born on July 10th, 2014 at 7:54am in Sudbury General Hospital, what was one of the best days of my cousins life soon turned from amazing to panic when nurses thought what they had heard was just a heart murmur turned out to be something far more concerning resulting in the immediate air lift to Sick Kids. Just as fast as she entered into this world so quick was she rushed off. With panic and emotions running high my cousin and her husband rushed from Sudbury straight to Toronto, a 387km drive, a 4hr and 40min drive away from their beautiful new born daughter. On arrival to Sick Kids they were greeted and ushered to little Nora's room where she was hooked up, at this point they were told of what they had found. Poor little Nora was suffering from Congenital Heart Defects which usually isn't genetic but was also what her Aunt had, who she had been named in memory of, they had said with defects such as the chambers in her heart being of different sizes, mixing of her blood and vessels only leaving the one side in proper form, also they were told she had a hole in her heart, now that wasn't everything, what they told them next was something that came as a surprise as it's not always heard of, they said she also had Situs Inversus, Situs Inversus is a genetic condition that causes the organs in the chest and abdomen to be positioned in a mirror image from their normal positions, Situs inversus is a very rare condition. It occurs in 0.01 percent of the U.S. population, or in an estimated 1 in 10,000 people. With that brought on Dextrocardia, in which the heart is located on the right side. So you can see with what they thought was a murmur turned into all of this. Sick Kids told them they would be there for a minimum of 6 weeks, with a list of surgeries to follow, 1) anytime up until 4 months old she could get a shunt or band that's only if she stops being able to regulate her oxygen and blood flow. 2) anywhere from 4-12 months old is called the Glenn Shunt, she will have to pass a lung pressure test and be a good weight to get this one. 3) will be anywhere from 2-3 years old and will be another form of a shunt. Now this is where our journey met up with theirs. My name is Sam, Godfather to little Nora, and along with my fiancé Melissa have tried our best to be there for little Nora and her Heart of Gold. She was admitted to Sick Kids on the Friday and we were there by the Sunday. Fearing the worst but praying for the best we didn't know what to expect walking in, what we found amazed us, this beautiful miracle, healthy and looking around with talks from the doctors of release as early as that Tuesday, Nora was making incredible progress. Proving to us all she wasn't giving up and was going to be here for the long haul. She was gaining weight, not at the rate they hoped but she was doing it and didn't look like she was going to stop. The blue in her lips and feet were fading and her colour was coming back. After a car seat test and complete look over from her personal team of physicians and nurses she was good to go and be on her way back to the Great White North. Next is our first visit to see little Nora since her stay in Sick Kids and I have to say we were amazed by how far she has come, she was noticeably bigger she was always hungry and her eyes were open taking it all in, she has a way of making you instantly fall in love with her with just a look. We spoke with my cousin and she filled us in with all that was in store for Nora and her Heart of Gold. She told us they would be having to go back to Sick Kids every 3 weeks for follow ups with the doctors there as well as the paediatricians in Sudbury, that due to the amount of weight she needs to gain, breast milk isn't an option and formula is the way to go. This is where our Nora's Heart of Gold Fund comes into play, we are trying to raise money to help with the purchasing of formula, where new borns on formula are usually equal parts formula to water out little Nora is significantly more, the cost of a case of formula can range anywhere from 50$-70$ depending where you buy it and because she can't be on the powder the cans is what she's on and a case of 12 are lucky to last Monday to Friday, we also want to help raise money to help get them to and from Sick Kids in Toronto, with the cost of gas always rising and these trips lasting up until she's around 4 maybe even longer it will take a hefty hit on their accounts specially with raising a 2 year old boy at the same time and maintaining regular bills, also we want it to help with anything else they may need along the way, as her Godfather and Aunt we want to try and help like many of us do when it comes to our family and friends so we hope that with the help of and the amazing people like yourselves that are out there reading this, please help us by getting Nora the help, the formula, the meds, the vitamins and the care she so willingly deserves and so we can keep this Heart of Gold going strong, thank you very much and God bless, Sam and Melissa
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Sammi Smythe
Cambridge, ON

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