Infant who endured two open-heart operations smiles for the first time in the hospital
It’s a beautiful time when your baby is developing, from the first time you feel his kick to the first step.
However, when a child is born with health problems, these moments are wonderful.
Theodore “Teddy” Nelson was born with only half a heart, and his parents had to wait until six months to see his first smile, an unforgettable moment in more ways than one.
This adorable baby had just had her second open heart surgery and had been in the hospital for 185 days when she turned to her parents and smiled.
“On the second open-heart surgery, he had a stroke,” mom Alexandria Nelson of Buffalo, New York, told “Good Morning America.”
She said she wasn’t sure if Teddy would ever be able to smile.
“We weren’t sure there were connections in the brain that allowed a smile to appear on his face.” It really gave him a great glimmer of hope for the future that he can overcome these obstacles.”
“That’s what a smile meant to us,” she said.
Teddy was born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, a congenital heart abnormality that disrupts the normal flow of blood through the heart. He needed surgery 15 minutes after his birth in August 2019.
When Teddy accomplished this remarkable feat, his parents managed to capture it on film. Multiple social media sources posted the clip and hundreds of millions of people fell in love with his adorable face.
“His sister was in the room; [Teddy] loves hearing her voice and my husband, he has that special touch,” Alexandria said.
“Determination and Struggle”
In the coming weeks, Teddy will need a third operation, but his family is eager to bring his precious bundle home for the first time.
“They call it wild and we love it,” she said. “Half the time we don’t give him enough credit … he [has] so much determination and fight.
“I always say, ‘Half Theodore’s heart produces twice as much love.’