Talula’s Barefoot Books Blog

A running commentary on life as an online bookstore owner after 25 years in Early Childhood Education.

Families of Children with Heart Problems, Please Read About “Possum’s Heart!”

Posted by Talula on July 5, 2009


Read "Possum's Heart" by Karen Collum below.

Read "Possum's Heart" by Karen Collum below.



This post is NOT one of my normal children’s book-spouting posts…

As you will see if you continue reading, there IS A CHILDREN’S BOOK INVOLVED ; but it is a very special book being written as we speak for a very special little almost-4 year old boy! 

His mom (Karen Collum) is a wonderful blogger friend of mine and I am proud to know her. It also happens that she is a published children’s author, with many more books in the works over the last few months. In recent weeks; she felt she might be writing ‘Too Much’ and decided to slow down and spend a lot more time “in-the-moment” with her 1 year old twins and her almost 4 year old son she calls “Possum” in her blog.

Who among us parents hasn’t felt the tug of missing time with our little ones during our busy, everyday modern lives? How many of us really listen to that little voice in our heads and do something about it to change our schedules; and actually create more time for just “being” with precious babies before they grow too big for us to cuddle?

Well, Karen did! (Thanks to the ‘voices’ in the universe, God and whoever else you listen to!)

And this is what Karen observed. Her little man ran, jumped and played everyday – but not quite as much as he had a month or two ago.  Several bouts of normal type illness occurred through the last few weeks, each running its course through the whole family. And Karen noticed that her “Possum” didn’t bounce back quite as well as the other members of the family. So she began to worry, as mothers tend to do; and called to make an appoinment with the local doctor. The doctor heard a little murmor in his chest, said it was probably just a symptom hanging around from the virus, and planned another visit to check him out again in a week. The noise was still there; so as doctors do; referred her to a Specialist. Problem was; the soonest visit to be scheduled was for 3-4 months down the road. This was unsettling to the mother. So she prayed for God to intervene in the timing, if he thought “Possum” really needed it.

Read Karen Collum’s  own story here about what happened after that in a very small town in Australia! And you will get the extra bonus of reading her unfinished new book “Possum’s Heart”.

Now “Possum” is scheduled for heart surgery in a few weeks, and true to form for a children’s writer; Karen is writing his story into a book to make it easier for him to deal with the fears and worry that a little guy has when faced with a hospital visit and a major operation. Now this amazing woman who was a ‘childminder’  and ‘Positive Parenting’ teacher in her life before babies;  has embarked on a book  (written almost overnite) to help her own son (and if published later, in the future – many other children) – overcome their  worries when facing major heart surgery.  She has just found an illustrator to put together a few drawings to make it a ‘Real’ book for “Possum” in time for his surgery. 

Plus,  she has contacted the organization for families of children with heart disease  in Australia called;

HEART KIDS (www.heartkids.org.au) to find some more information and correspond with other families dealing with the same type of situation. Maybe by posting this information here in this blog, I can help bring more families a link to more support and information.  

And for those familes facing the same thing at home in the U.S. here is a link to my local children’s hospital Texas Childrens Hospital (renowned around the world for its Pediatric Medicine and support of families).  Families here might find the following pages of use:

Texas Children’s Pediatric Hospital Resources:

Parent Connect

Parent Advice Line

Downloadable pdf of Safety Info to Post On Your Refrigerator   




2 Responses to “Families of Children with Heart Problems, Please Read About “Possum’s Heart!””

  1. Karen said

    Talula, thank you so much for your kind words! You made me all teary!! And yes, we will forever be bound together as Renaissance Women 🙂

  2. […] Read more: Families of Children with Heart Problems, Please Read About “Possum’s Heart!” […]

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