BABY Evie Stove is Bendigo’s little fighter.
Evie is just four-months-old but has already survived nine cardiac arrests.
She has transposition of the great arteries, pulmonary stenosis and a huge hole in the heart.
Evie was six-weeks-old when doctors discovered she had a kinked aorta and abnormal coronary.
Her heart stopped beating and Evie’s parents, Emily and Andrew Stove, were told they wouldn’t have long with their little girl.
She ended up with a liver laceration and bleeding but, miraculously Evie’s heart started again and her liver slowly clotted.
Evie is an Intensive Care Unit patient at the Royal Children’s Hospital and things are still touch and go.
But mum Emily hopes to bring her baby girl home to Bendigo in time for Christmas.
“That’s our goal at the moment,” Emily said.
“I’m staying at Ronald Mac in Parkville but Andrew’s in Bendigo working.
“He had the first few months off because it was touch and go and she was critically ill but he has had to go back.
“We also have a three-year-old which he has at home as well and we juggle with my parents.
“So it would be nice if we could all be home soon.”
Emily said the past few months had been an emotional rollercoaster.
“We found out at 20 weeks that she had heart disease,” Emily said.
“She was born at the Royal Women’s and transferred straight here to the Children’s and had her first operation on day three.
“We were in ICU for a couple of weeks, we got moved to the ward and then we got transferred to Bendigo to hospital.
“She arrested so we came straight back to Melbourne
“She kept arresting for a good two to three weeks so she’s actually had nine cardiac arrests in total.”
Evie also has vocal cord paralysis.
“Her left vocal cord accidentally got snipped in surgery,” Emily said.
“But her right one, in time, will recover.
“We hope that she will be able to talk but we’re not sure.
“She had to get a tracheotomy put in at the end of July so that pretty much has enabled her to grow.
“She’s also on a machine called CPAP which is continuous positive airway pressure and that makes it easier for her to breathe.
“Pretty much she uses all of her energy to breathe rather than grow so for her to be on this CPAP helps her put on weight.”
Emily said things had been looking up for the past few weeks until Evie had a turn mid-last week.
“She wasn't breathing, she was pale, they had to bag her and put in a central line,” Emily said.
“She might have an infection, we really don’t know what set her off.
“She’d had a few really good weeks so it was quite a shock.”
Evie is booked in for her next surgery on Wednesday.
“It’s for an upgrade of a shunt.
“She’s got a three mill shunt in and they’re hoping to put a four mill to get her through to her full repair that she’s having at 12 months.”
Emily shared her family’s story with the Bendigo Advertiser because she wanted to share her daughter’s journey with the Bendigo community.
“She is just so amazing,” Emily said.
“She is a real fighter.
“We were told we’re not going to have long with her and she’s sort of trooped on and come in leaps and bounds from where we've been.
“As soon as she gets this shunt we’re pretty much recovery and hopefully we can come home.”
We were told we’re not going to have long with her and she’s sort of trooped on ...