Starry eyes (and 142/365), originally uploaded by Heather-L.

This sweet girl lost her battle with her heart last night.
July 12, 2006 – August 5, 2009

Ava’s story: Here’s the story of the little girl who really deserves to be treated like a princess, written by her mother:
“Ava Jane is truly a princess who deserves to be treated like a queen. Ava Jane was born on July 12, 2006 with a congenital heart defect that required immediate surgery when she was two days old. After that surgery, doctors realized that Ava Jane’s heart defect was much more extensive, and recommended a heart transplant. After twelve weeks of waiting, Ava Jane received her new heart on October 11, 2006. She flourished with her new heart, finally having the energy to grow and thrive. Unfortunately, because of her compromised immune system, Ava Jane developed bacterial meningitis in December 2007 and spent her Christmas at Egleston. In order to relieve the pressure in her brain, neurosurgeons placed a shunt in her brain in February 2008. As the effects of the meningitis began to subside, Ava Jane again began to make progress and grow and thrive. However, the months of the illness delayed her development, and as a two year old, she is more like a nine month old in her motor skills. In March 2009, finally feeling better, Ava Jane began taking some steps with assistance and was quick to scoot around the house, pulling down toilet paper in the bathroom and getting into general toddler mischief. She began to slow down by the end of April and after weeks of inconsolable tears, Ava Jane was admitted to the hospital on Mother’s Day. After running tests on every part of her body, doctors discovered that she had ulcers in her colon, the consequence of the immunosuppressant medicines necessary to protect her transplant. She is beginning to feel better, and armed with answers, medicines are being adjusted and plans are being made to relieve her distress. Ava Jane is a beautiful, social two year old with a quick to smile and amazing eyelashes envied by all the adult women around her. She truly needs a chance to be whisked away to princess land. We realize that our times with her may be shorter than we wish, and we would treasure special pictures of her for our family.”