A loving dad has got a tattoo to resemble his baby son’s heart surgery SCAR to make him feel better about the mark.
Richard Davies, 29, decided to get the scar-like tattoo after son Bobby had open heart surgery to repair a birth defect which meant he was born with half a heart.
The floor fitter from Swansea, Wales, spent £200 and two hours having the artwork done on his chest so that his son is never alone.
Richard and mum Natasha, 30, an accountant, first discovered son Bobby had a heart defect at their 20-week scan at Singleton Hospital in Swansea.
Doctors referred them for further tests at the Heath hospital in Cardiff, where doctors confirmed their unborn child was suffering from Tricuspid Atresia, Hypoplastic Right Heart Syndrome and a Ventricular Septal Defect.
Speaking of the diagnosis, she says doctors gave her three options, to give supportive comfort care, allow him to live as long as he could, or have surgery when he was born.
She says: “Our world came crashing down around us.
“Neither of us had any knowledge of congenital heart defects and didn’t know what this would mean for our baby.
“We were given three options; surgery when he was born, supportive comfort care meaning we would let him be born with no intervention and allow him to live for as long as he could or a termination.
“As you can imagine at 22 weeks gestation, I was inconsolable.
“But my husband and I both knew straight away that we would fight for our baby.
“No matter what. So we did. I had frequent scans and was monitored closely through the rest of my pregnancy.”
Thankfully, baby Bobby was born at St Michael’s Hospital in Bristol in July weighing 7lbs and breathing on his own, meaning that he didn’t need to have the surgery right away.
Little Bobby had the six hour surgery called a Bi directional Cavo Pulmonary Shunt in October when he was three months old.
Bobby will require a second surgery between the ages of three and five years old to help support his heart as he grows.
Congenital heart disease is one of the most common types of birth defect which affects up to 9 in every 1,000 babies born in the UK according to the NHS.
In honor of his son’s huge feat so young and to mark ‘congenital heart defect week of 7-14 feb’ husband Richard had the tattoo of Bobby’s scar so he will never be the only one with the scar.
Natasha says: “The one person we couldn’t have got through this however, is my amazing husband Richard.
“His unwavering support has been like no other and Bobby and I are lucky to have him.
“His tattoo of Bobby’s scar will remind him forever that he isn’t alone, and we will be there for him all the way.
“We want to spread awareness of this as congenital heart diseases are more common than you might expect.
“We want to help as many families as possible face the ongoing heartache and uncertain futures that having a child with only half a heart can face.”
The family are now raising funds to help other children like Bobby.