Zalis’s Story

Zali was only six weeks old when she was diagnosed with a heart condition. Despite their many concerns, Zali’s parents were determined to treat her just the same as they would any child – they didn’t want their daughter to be defined by heart disease.

“However, it’s sometimes hard to avoid being over protective when you know that a cough or cold could lead to a chest infection and then something more serious.” Her mother, Deanna, says.

Just like most babies her age, Zali did the rounds of gym babes and play dates with her doting mum, with the goal being that when she reached 10kg, she would undergo surgery. Finally the big day arrived.

“The toughest thing I’ve ever done in my life was entering the operating theatre and allowing them to put my little angel to sleep in my arms in preparation for heart surgery. I don’t wish this experience on anyone…”

But Deanna was forced to face this terrifying situation yet another four times, as repeated operations were required to treat this frail little girl.

Thankfully today Zali is a happy, talkative and determined little toddler who, as her mother puts it, “has a lot of attitude”.

HeartKids NSW has remained by the family’s side throughout their journey with CHD.

“I’m so grateful for HeartKids NSW – because of their support we don’t feel so alone.”

 Zali 3

New South Wales