Bea and Paul, parents for the first time, were shocked by the news given by the doctor who performed the ultrasound examinations during pregnancy. They learned that in the heart of their first daughter, the four chambers were not visible.
So they first met Yves d’Udekem, a cardiac surgeon at The Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) who would operate on their two-day-old daughter’s heart. From that moment he would operate the girl and stay in their lives forever.
“At first we found out that our daughter had complexes, but we still did not know what complexes she had. This is how Dr. Yve entered our lives and tried to find out what complexes our daughter’s heart had. He did this through a drawing, explaining to us in the best form, her illness.” Bea said.
As soon as she was born she started having heart problems and two days later, she had her first cardiac surgery. “It was a scary day for us, but we were greatly relieved when we were informed that the operation had been completed” Bea remembers. “Dr. Yve told us that he’d gone for broke.”
Baby Tomlin, as she was known in her early days, was diagnosed with transposition of the great arteries, hypoplastic arch, and ventricular septal defect so she would need another surgery at one-year-old. She started recovering and treating her complex, but like all those children who had heart problems, the parents had some setbacks along the way. But as the days passed, as Baby Tomlin grew stronger, Bea and Paul knew they had to decide on a name.
“Since I was seven-years-old and, but we were told that she would be known as the “blue baby” because of her heart condition, so we had to think of another name,” Bea said.
“Then we thought about the wonderful work that cardiac surgeons had done, and that’s when we thought what about Yve for a name. So Baby Tomlin would be named Yve”.
After Yve turned 6, she was very excited to meet for the first time, the hero who saved her life and the surgeon, from whom she took her name.
“I had never seen him so I could not distinguish who he was,” Yve said.
“When I first met him, I was very happy and we took a picture together. I also asked him about the surgery, and he showed me a lot for my heart model.”
Yve is now an intelligent, very happy, and talented nine-year-old. She likes bicycles, likes to do swimming competitions, and play with her lego collection. She also has a desire to become a teacher when she grows up.