Friends, it’s that time of year again! February 14th, in the congenital heart defect world, is celebrated as Congenital Heart Defect (CHD) Awareness Day. It’s a time for us to feel free to talk about congenital heart defects, for us to do interviews on television, radio, podcasts, and in blogs. It’s a chance for us to share what is happening in the CHD world. It’s a time for us to come together as a community to share stories and to embrace one another.
Living in a COVID-19 world makes the last thing we like to do — embrace one another — difficult. But luckily for us, we also live in a technologically advanced world! We don’t have to only hug skin-to-skin. We can give virtual hugs!
We can communicate on so many different platforms it can make your head spin! Many platforms have groups, private messages or private chats, and you can share photos, gifs, memes, and videos, too! When I think back to what it was like 26 years ago when my baby was first diagnosed with a critical congenital heart defect, and how virtually no support was available, it’s mind-blowing now to see how much support there is for newly identified CHD families.
What are you doing tomorrow to celebrate CHD Awareness Day? Why not take a moment and let people know, on whatever platform you choose, about congenital heart defects. You could share a fun fact (it’s the most common birth defect, it’s one of the leading killers of children under the age of 1; around 40,000 babies are born with CHDs in the USA alone every year!), share a photo or story about why CHDs matter to you, or you could write a review about a book or movie about CHD to help other people learn about those resources. There are so many ways you can spread awareness. You could post a photo of yourself or loved one “rocking your scar” — another way to promote CHD awareness and help people with accepting, even embracing their body – scars and all! You could even listen to a podcast about CHDs or for the CHD community — which is what “Heart to Heart with Anna” is all about!
How will you celebrate CHD Awareness Day? Feel free to leave a photo or comment here to tell us what you will do!