CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Waelynn Johnson was born early… at 33-weeks old… with a heart defect and Down syndrome. She weighed just over three pounds and spent 54-days in NICU. This sweet girl is now almost 6-months old, and late last week underwent open heart surgery.
This morning, we welcome her as the newest one of our amazing #MollysKids. Waelynn’s heart defect is what concerns her parents, Max and Michaela. She has an AVSD, or Atrioventricular Septal Defect. A normal heart is made up of two valves and four chambers.
AVSD is just a fancy way to say that Waelynn’s heart is one big valve. During her recent surgery, doctors made a wall that goes down the middle (to make the two valves), then added two flaps on the middle of either side (to create the four chambers).
“We know that children born with Down syndrome can lead very happy, healthy lives,” said friend Katelyn Hazelton. “So that is not Max and Michaela’s concern. Their main concern is Waelynn’s heart. Prognosis is currently up in the air. They are taking it day by day with her recovery.”
This Gaston County family – Max grew up in Dallas, Michaela in Gastonia and the family currently lives in Mount Holly – has lots of love and support. Michaela writes often about #TeamWaelynn on her Facebook page, here. As a mother, she says, she leans often on her faith. “Our precious girl has had a journey in her five months,” Michaela said.
“Recovery has had a bit of a rocky start for Waelynn. We have ran into problems with her kidneys, partial collapsed lungs, oxygen, potassium and magnesium levels being off, trouble with her Gtube and a few other things. We have been and will continue to trust in the Lord.”
The friends and family in love with Waelynn are hosting a spaghetti benefit dinner next Tuesday evening at Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Cherryville from 5-7 pm. Free food. Donations only.
“We just wanted to ask if those who love #MollysKids could keep Waelynn in their thoughts and prayers,” Katelyn said. “Maybe share her story? They’re still in Levine Children’s Hospital. There are some obstacles right now, and this family and little girl are filled with so much love.” Done. Max and Michaela – thank you for sharing your girl with all of us. Please keep us updated.