Our warrior baby Dieter Shengxian Chen

For: Jenny & Chris Chen
Boise, ID
Organizer: Crystal White
Our warrior baby Dieter Shengxian Chen (Jenny & Chris Chen)
$9,021
of $13,000 goal
69% Complete
Raised by 129 donors

The Story

On Monday August 14, 2017 Chris & Jenny Chen (and big brother Henry!) welcomed Dieter Shengxian Chen into their family! After a long and difficult delivery, Dieter was born 8lbs 10 oz. Dieter was big and strong--which was exactly what their doctor told them they needed. Dieter was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS). A rare heart defect. In a nut shell, the left side of his heart did not develop correctly and the connecting valves and vessels were about 1/10 of the size they should be. The treatment for this is a series of 3 open heart surgeries in the first few years of his life. The first one within the first few days. They have to re-route his blood flow from the left side to the right side. Dieter will depend entirely on the right side of his heart his entire life.

On Wednesday (August 16th) at just two days old Dieter had his 1st open heart surgery. Prayers & miracles were key to Dieter having a successful surgery--and an incredibly wonderful medical staff. After hours of waiting during the surgery, his parents were told things went as well as they could have hoped. His blood vessels were becoming more restrictive and doing the surgery so soon was absolutely mandatory for him. Again blessings and miracles.

On Friday (August 18th) Dieter had a second surgery closing his chest (they have to wait for swelling to go down--absolutely no pressure on his fragile heart!) things went well with this procedure, and the surgeon was pleased with how Dieter is coming along. 

The next month will be spent with a Dieter in the CICU (cardiac intensive care) & in the surgical unit for close monitoring at Primary Children's, with his mom being on hand as much as possible. This is a highly critical and fragile time called the "Interstage Program" where things can change quickly and often, with many unpredictable complicationsand last till the seconds open heart surgery.

Dieter's second open heart surgery will take place anywhere from 4-6 months (depending on how well he heals and gains weight) and his 3rd open heart surgery will be around 3 years old. Jenny plans on staying in Provo till after the 2nd surgery, not wanting to switch cardiologists and commuting from Idaho to SLC for bi-weekly visits etc.

Chris, Jenny and Henry live in Nampa, Idaho and received special permission from their insurance to deliver at U of U hospital, which has a connecting window to Primary Children's. Jenny is staying nearby as long as necessary, but Chris needs to go home for work and has limited paid days off. We are hoping to raise enough money to help with the staggering amount of medical bills, out of state expenses, possible child care fees for Henry and travel costs etc.

As you can imagine stress levels are very high. Living apart for the next few months is so difficult and so exhausting. Henry developed a cold and has been unable to meet his little brother, which was disappointing, but thanks to facetime and modern technology they can keep him as involved as possible.

Jenny and Chris have felt the love and the prayers from so many in the past few weeks and have felt Gods hand and calming assurance strongly this last week. They are humbled and so very grateful. As a family we thank everyone for their kind wishes and thoughtful gestures, it has all been very appreciated. We will keep updating and keeping people as informed as we can! Again, thank you!

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on December 25, 2017

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Posted on December 25, 2017

Than you for your continued love, prayers and support for Dieter and our family.  The first couple of days after surgery were very tough.  He was extubated shortly after surgery, but later Friday night after every effort and intervention to try to help him, he eventually had to be reintubated.  Sunday morning, he was successfully extubated again and was able to get his chest tubes and IJ out, so then we could hold him again!  We’re so grateful for that and consider his amazing progress in just one day a Christmas miracle!  He was pretty content, and thingsxare getting closer to his baseline.  I’ve learned that sometimes the toughest challenges help us appreciate the progress and improvements even more.  Dieter is such a tough, little heart warrior!  We know there is power in uniting in faith and prayer in his behalf.  Thank you!  Merry Christmas! 


Posted on December 22, 2017

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Posted on December 22, 2017

We’re  so relieved to have made it through Dieter’s second open heart surgery.  Now we pray his recovery will go well.  It will be a tough few days at least it sounds like with head and upper body swelling and headaches as his body adjusts to the changes.  He was able to be extubated about 15 minutes after moving to the Cardiac ICU which should be very helpful With the adjustments his body is making.  Thanks so much for all of the support, love, faith, and prayers on his behalf!


Posted on December 22, 2017

Posted on December 22, 2017

We’re humbled and so grateful for all the generosity and support we have received in this journey with Dieter so far!  We’ve truly been so blessed!  We sincerely appreciate your investing in his life and future!  We wanted to let you know that he goes in for his next open heart surgery tomorrow, Dec 22 at 7:30am.  We have great confidence in and appreciation for his surgeon, anesthesiologist, and medical teams.  We trust in the Lord and his watchful hand and feel he has great plans for Dieter.  We invite you to pray for him at this special time as well.  We’re grateful for the unity and faith that have helped bring miracles about for him.  Thank you so much!

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