Bows for Ashley is a fundraising effort to help little Ashley Stottlemire's parents pay a stack of medical bills that gets larger everyday. Ashley has had open heart surgery to repair a heart defect.
Dan and I found out that we would be adding another sweet child to our family on April 7th, 2010. We were so excited! Noah and Victoria were super pumped to have a baby added to the mix. Victoria not so secretly hoped for a baby girl and Noah told anyone that would listen that it was going to be a girl. We had an ultrasound at around 17 weeks that confirmed we would be having a baby girl! We had some interesting doctor's appointments along the way. We knew that Ashley would be born smaller than the average baby, butnothing that caused too much alarm. Sometimes she would have abnormal stress tests and we would have some follow up testings to make sure everything was progressing normally. We welcomed Ashley Jane Stottlemire into the world on December 9, 2011 at 11:38 am. She weighed 5lbs 9 oz-20 in. She is the perfect addition to our beautiful family. We have three children now. Victoria-10 (April 2, 2000), Noah-4 (March 31, 2006), and Ashley Jane-6 wks (December 9, 2010).
Ashley was delivered via csection at OSU Hospital. It is such an overwhelming feeling to hear your child's first cry. She came out fighting mad. She was brushed by me on the operating table to be quickly evaluated. She would turn very blue if she was not on oxygen. They got her stable enough to transport her to the NICU to do some further testing. I had to go to recovery for an hour post op. It was a very scary time for our family. No one was allowed to go back with her because they had to maintain a sterile environment for some tests. The rest of the night was a whirlwind. We were allowed to see her briefly a few times through out the evening. She was in very critical condition due to a pneumothorax/collapsed lung. Ashley's doctor let us know that they were considering transferring her to Children's Hospital to do some further testing. It was very hard to be separated from my sweet baby. Dan went over to Children's to meet her and get her admitted. That night they performed an ECHO (ultrasound of the heart) and did some X-rays to find the cause of her being critically ill. They could not pin point anything. They were considering putting her on a machine called ECHMO (heart lung machine) to give them more time to figure things out. The following day, I was temporarily released to go and visit her. Upon arrival we found out that Ashley had a congenital heart defect called Total Anomalous Venous Return (TAPVR). This is a heart defect that requires open heart surgery early in infancy. It was a scary time filled with so many unknowns. Ashley has spent the past 5 weeks learning about breathing and eating. She has had a nasal cannula to help maintain her O2 saturations. It was a strange way of life to become accustom to-but we did it. The worst part was not having our family together at home. All of this sounds like an understatement to the feelings that have surrounded our life. We have felt feelings that we never knew existed and had feelings of a greater depth than we ever knew possible. We feel blessed to have each of you in our lives to support and love us...and look forward to being able to do the same for you. Thank you for sharing our journey.