Mom hears her son’s heart beating inside 4-year-old girl’s chest
An overly-excited Heather Clark placed a stethoscope on 4-year-old Jordan Drake’s chest and waited patiently to hear the heartbeat.
With one hand on her mouth, Heather leaned back and started crying.
“That’s your baby,” Drake’s mother, Esther Gonzalez whispered, as the California Heather listened to a consistent thump.
The Californian mom heard the heartbeat of her late son Lukas for the first time in years.
It was “the happiest day of her life since her son was born,” Donate Life Arizona Media Relations Coordinator Jacqueline Keidel told CBS News.
When Lukas passed away in 2013 at only 7-months-old, she decided to donate his organs, saving three lives, including that of Jordan.
“I knew if Lukas could prevent another family from experiencing the loss that I felt, that’s what I needed to do,” Heather said.
Jordan was fighting for her life in Phoenix Children’s Hospital when she was 18-months-old due to a congenital heart issue. After going through six heart operations, a stroke, seizures, and brain hemorrhaging, Jordan’s mother knew her baby was in need of a new heart to make it.
And then, the miracle happened.
While Esther was happy her child was going to enjoy a long, healthy life, she couldn’t stop herself from crying for the donor family.
“Whoever they were. I knew they had just lost a child,” she said.
A short time after the transplant surgery, Esther received a letter from Heather.
“‘How do I thank this woman — a thank you sounds so small,” Jacqueline said. “She would take out a piece of paper, start to write a letter and then couldn’t.”
Although it took some time for them to connect, they eventually did. Three years after, they had a special meeting.
As per Jacqueline, only around 5% of donor families meet or communicate.
“You have a family that’s gone through the most tragic loss of their life and that can be tough for them,” Jacqueline said. “On the other side, there’s survivor guilt, living out your life knowing someone passed away in order for you to be here today.”
Dr. John Nigro, Director for PCH’s Heart Transplant Program, who performed the surgery was also surprised by the news of their meeting.
“[Clark] was very excited to meet him; he held her son’s heart in his hands,” said Jacqueline. “It’s really just incredible.”
The two mothers hope their meeting will inspire others to consider organ donation.
Currently, Jordan is too young to understand the vital role Heather plays in her life, but she will find out one day.
In the meantime, Heather is planning to attend her graduation, wedding, and every other major event in her life.
You can see the heartwarming video in the link below.
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