Heart Families Unite!!!

by Megan

So yesterday was the Heartbeat 5000 5k Walk/Run for Children’s Hospital. This is our 2nd year participating and I have a feeling it will become an annual thing. :-) Which makes me happy! It is a small gesture to say “thank you” for what Children’s has done for us. Between medical science and the power of prayer – we have a busy 4.5 year old who is thriving on half a heart. Amazing!!!

This is why I ran yesterday. I ran for my miracle baby!

This is why I ran yesterday. I ran for my miracle baby!

I’ve written several times about our heart journey with Eli. Here’s a very, very brief synopsis…20 week ultrasound revealed two things – 1. it’s  BOY!! 2. he has HLHS = hypolastic left heart syndrome. He had 3 open-heart surgeries and countless doctor visits in the first 2.5 years of his life. Now, he’s 4.5 years old and is getting ready to go to preschool in the fall.

This is my race time. It was a great race with beautiful weather. Felt amazing to run for Eli and so many other heart babies!

This is my race time. It was a great race with beautiful weather. Felt amazing to run for Eli and so many other heart babies!

We were so blessed to have some amazing friends and family come support us. It was fantastic!! I was overcome with emotions several times throughout the morning. The amount of support that was evident at the Heartbeat 5000 was so amazing! Tons of people supporting someone they know with a CHD. Amazing!!!

I love my family!! Such amazing support. Thank you Dad and Brianna for joining us!

I love my family!! Such amazing support system. Thank you Dad and Brianna for joining us!

It was fun to see families who were in the hospital at the same time. Very heartwarming to hear more about their journeys.  Some journeys have been very successful and others have not been. Tears were shed and hugs were given.

Without having done any training or much running since the last HB 5000 - Dave has an amazing race time! He split his time between walking and running. Good job babe!!

Without having done any training or much running since the last HB 5000 – Dave has an amazing race time! He split his time between walking and running. Good job babe!!

Some of the people we had the joy of seeing at the race…

Megan and her boys, Elijah and Sammy. Elijah is a heart warrior. He rocks some awesome scars like Eli. :-)

Megan and her boys, Elijah and Sammy. Elijah is a heart warrior. He rocks some awesome scars like Eli. :-)

My amazing friend, Cheri, from college. She is a rock star!! Thanks coming friend!!

My amazing friend, Cheri, from college. She is a rock star!! Thanks coming friend!!

Francis and Laura Tutell from church came out to support us as well. This was Laura's FIRST race, it was also the furthest she has ever run. She rocked it!! Thanks again!!

Francis and Laura Tutell from church came out to support us as well. This was Laura’s FIRST race, it was also the furthest she has ever run. She rocked it!! Thanks again!!

I didn’t get pictures of them but we also saw Casey & Jade Underdahl and their little heart baby, Ailee (adorable!!). A student of mine from school, DJ, and his mom (Julia) were there as well. DJ has received some heart care from Children’s as a baby.

There was a kiddie race and we signed both boys up. I was thinking that Eli would take off running and be super excited and Noah would be shy and reserved. Nope!! Noah took off running, he was on a mission!! He gave the Children’s mascot, Star, a high-five and kept going straight (he was suppose to turn around and head back).  He didn’t want to be done. He refused to turn around and finish the kiddie race. I had to carry him.

The start of the kiddie race. They are all lined up and ready to go!

The start of the kiddie race. They are all lined up and ready to go!

Mommy & Noah finishing the kiddie race. He loved it!!

Mommy & Noah finishing the kiddie race. He loved it!!

Eli was more reserved with the whole running idea. He stuck pretty close to Dave while running. But he had lots of fun still.

Daddy & Eli finishing up the kiddie race.

Daddy & Eli finishing up the kiddie race.

Eli with his ribbon for running the race. He was super proud! As were mommy and daddy.

Eli with his ribbon for running the race. He was super proud! As were mommy and daddy.

I think next year we will walk/run with the boys in the stroller and let them run when they want to. They enjoyed getting out of the stroller and finishing the race at the end. It was fun to watch!

Here are Poppa, Auntie Brianna, Eli and Noah's times. Such fun!!

Here are Poppa, Auntie Brianna, Eli and Noah’s times. Such fun!!

We got to see Dr. Rios (Eli’s cardiologist) and Jocelyn (a cardiologist we’ve seen often while in the hospital). It was so wonderful to see them as well. I enjoy seeing them outside of the hospital setting.

After the race was over, we lost Noah to the bounce house. He apparently had more energy to burn. :-)

After the race was over, we lost Noah to the bounce house. He apparently had more energy to burn. :-)

We had 16 people on our team and raised about 64% of our goal. Whoop whoop!! If you still want to donate, please do. http://www.heartbeat5000.com, “donate”, “Team E” with Megan Burlingame as the team captain.

Mommy and Noah - we had fun!!

Mommy and Noah – we had fun!!

All in all, we had a fantastic day. I’m so thankful that Children’s sponsors an event like this, it is so nice to be able to “give back” to a place that has given us so much. We are so thankful and grateful for the love, care and support we received at Children’s.

Thank you Children’s Hospital of Minnesota!!!!

 

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