When Lincoln was born he was intubated immediately and remained on a ventilator for his entire life. Because of this we were never able to hear Lincoln's voice, so in a way his heartbeat became his voice. Being able to still listen to Lincoln's heartbeat brings us so much comfort. The idea for the Heartbeat Animal program came, because we wanted our son Graham to have a part of his big brother, we wanted something tangible that he would be able to hold on to and love.
And from there we just thought that other parents would cherish having one, as well. And the program just grew.....the heartbeat animals have become so powerful because, as every parent knows, its an incredible thing when you get to hear your child's heartbeat. Parents are often anxious to hear that first heartbeat during pregnancy, because it signifies life. It makes it all feel real. And for the parents who's children have to go through so may procedures and operations it represents their strength. And for those who lose a child it is one more symbol that their child was here, that their child fought and that they will always be theirs.
The Heart Center -
St. Louis Children's Hospital