LWB Community Blog

Thanks to the Art Auction . . .

. . . Baby Xiao’s Life is Forever Changed!
As we are preparing for this year’s Art Auction on eBay beginning April 23, I went through the list of the 13 children with heart disease that were helped with the proceeds last year.

Children whose lives have been changed and are now alive because of this money. This year, more than ever before, this auction is so needed to heal children….children with heart defects that are waiting for their lives to be saved.

One child in particular that I was taken by while reading through the list was baby Xiao. I remembered the heartbreak of his story…..We didn’t think we were going to help him after the first review of his information. We were told that his “window of opportunity” was almost closed, and he may not be a candidate for surgery.

Little Xiao had truncus arteriosus and also had a very small pulmonary artery. In the US, these children are immediately healed at birth with a complete repair, but by the time we received his file, baby Xiao was already 7 months old and his heart was enlarging. He was SO blue…one of the bluest babies I had ever seen. Because his little heart had still not been repaired, his pulmonary hypertension was increasing, and he had HUGE collateral vessels. If there was any chance to help him, we knew that he needed to be moved to the hospital immediately. There was no time to waste.

Thank goodness we had Art Auction funds. We sent him to the hospital and did a heart cath. They thought that they would be able to help, and right away moved him for surgery. They performed a Bidirectional Shunt to improve his blood flow, and his color improved right away. He will still need another surgery, but he is doing so well now, and he is alive!

He is now almost 17 months old and loves to eat. His favorite food is crackers. Developmentally, he is doing well. He can stand in his walker, sit on his own, and is crawling. His nannies love him and say that he is very well-behaved.

I look at his photos and know that this child is alive today because of the Art Auction….Thank you so much for making this a success each year! These children count on your continued support.

Karen Maunu is the Associate Executive Director for Love Without Boundaries. She lives in MN with her husband LeRoy and five children, Ryan, Tyler, Trevor, Anna (Guangdong province) and Ellie (Jilin province).

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