Mike and Lisa Friedrich first met at a wedding in Boise, Idaho. As the song suggests, first comes love (October 2015), then comes marriage (September 2017), then comes a baby (June 2019).
Mike and Lisa learned halfway through their pregnancy that they would have a daughter . . . and that she has five congenital heart defects (DORV, TGA, 2 VSDs, and an ASD). Her specific CHD is rare, occurring in about 1 in 10,000 babies. The cause is unknown, but she will require multiple heart surgeries - a few of them before her first birthday – and a lifetime of cardiac care.
The Friedrichs began consults with specialists at 22 weeks pregnant, but they couldn’t anticipate a premature delivery. Their daughter, Lillian “Lily” Diane, arrived May 2, over five weeks before her due date due to Lisa developing preeclampsia and HELLP. She came via emergency C-section, had a head full of hair (Lisa’s genes, obviously), and weighed just 4 lbs 15 oz.
Preemies come with their own set of complications and Lily’s medical team is currently working diligently to help her gain enough weight for her first open heart surgery before they attempt a second, more serious open heart surgery this fall.
Her team of doctors, nurses, surgeons, cardiologists and others met recently to strategize a plan of action to repair Lily's CHD. The doctors - some of the best - have admitted that her repair is going to test them.
Lily has been in the NICU since birth and is expected to stay for 2 to 3 months for surgery #1, then another 1 to 2 months for surgery #2. She is currently in heart failure with pulmonary edema. Now it’s a race against time for her to gain the necessary weight for her first surgery to be more successful.
Compounding this situation further is the fact that the Friedrichs moved from Idaho to NW Washington in October 2018, where both are less than a year into new jobs. Without the chance to build a network, and no family nearby, they are facing this situation with love and support from people like you, long-distance friends and family.
The purpose of this fundraiser is to lift the immense stress of medical bills, extended hospital stays for Lily and Lisa, multiple heart surgeries, housing near the hospital, among many other incidentals, and extended time off work for both Mike and Lisa.
Your generosity is greatly appreciated. If you know people that would like to contribute, please share this page. Though it may feel impersonal, contributing to this fund is an impactful way to support the Friedrichs. All three of them. ----