We have some dust in our eyes. Like a lot of dust.
Meet 5-year-old Ari Schultz. He was diagnosed with critical aortic stenosis when he was still in the womb.
“This meant if we didn’t intervene before he was born he would have only a two chamber heart,” his family wrote on a website for Ari. “We did, indeed, intervene, first at 20 weeks of gestation, setting us on a wild and unexpected path.”
More recently, Ari was living as an inpatient at Boston Children’s Hospital waiting for a heart transplant. On March 3, after 211 days of waiting, doctors gave Ari’s parents the good news that their son was getting a new heart.
Video uploaded to YouTube on Monday shows the touching moment when Ari’s parents, Mike and Erica, tell their son he’ll receive a new heart.
“So I can go home tomorrow?” Ari asks, trying to hold back his own tears.
“Not tomorrow, but soon after,” his dad tells him.
“And I can have more water?” Ari asks.
On Wednesday, his parents posted an update on Ari’s condition. The heart transplant was a success.
“As of now, he’s stable in the cardiac intensive care unit,” his parents wrote. “He is deeply sedated and has a breathing tube in. He looks like he’s resting comfortably.”
They also honored the heart donor on their YouTube page. “We are forever thankful for the donor and donor families sacrifice, and will think about them every day for the rest of our lives,” they wrote. “Please, #DonateLife.”
Ari still faces many challenges, his parents noted. He’ll be on a lifetime of medication to guard against rejection or infection of his heart. He’ll have to watch what he eats and deal with a compromised immune system, they wrote.
But for now, we’re just happy Ari has a new heart and will get to see a Red Sox game soon. Keep it up, little dude.