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Jaime King Shares Emotional Update on Son’s Heart Defect

Actor Jaime King is not just a fantastic mom; she’s also an advocate for children, like her son, who have congenital heart defects — and a proponent of affordable health care for all families, not just those as fortunate as hers. She recently shared an update on her younger son Leo’s health battle on social media.

King’s son with husband Kyle Newman — Leo Thames Newman, almost 3 — was born with a form of a complex congenital heart issue, transposition of the great arteries. With TGA, there is abnormal development of the fetal heart during the first eight weeks of pregnancy. As a result, the major vessels that flow blood away from the heart to the lungs or body are connected improperly. According to the Stanford Children Health’s website, TGA accounts for 3 percent of all congenital heart defects.

More: Jaime King Is Totally OK With Being an Imperfect Woman & Mother

King — also mother to James Knight, 4 — has written of Leo’s medical challenges before on social media to promote awareness of congenital heart defects in children. Yesterday on Instagram, she posted an update on his condition featuring a photo of her boy smiling like a champ despite the tangle of wires attached to his chest.

King wrote, “This boy! For all the parents who have children diagnosed with TGA and are terrified (as we were) we hope by sharing Leo Thames journey with you gives you hope that children with congenital heart defects grow up to be happier, stronger, more fearless kids than we would ever expect. Everyday he teaches me that what we are given we will overcome. And we will be immensely more aware of the beauty and gift that this life gives us. Our bodies are miracles. All children and families not only deserve but need health care so we must fight for all people in this country to have the necessary care to fully live the life God gave to each human. #leothames#happyboy @cedarssinai”

Three months ago, King shared this photo from Leo’s earliest days and more details of his fight.

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It’s #chdawareness month so I thought we should share our story of the birth and journey of Leo Thames. At 22 weeks pregnant he was diagnosed with Transposition of the Great Arteries. A perilous and complex congenital heart issue. We were told he had to have open heart surgery for him to survive. We are lucky that they now have this surgery as not so long ago he would not have had a chance. As it’s a traumatic yet beautiful story I will share only these details. He is alive and well because he is strong as a lion. He fought so hard and spent his every newborn day for weeks in the ICU. Because we have the means to have the most brilliant doctors and healthcare – Dr. Randy Harris, Dr. Allistar Phillips, everyone at the Cedars Sinai congenital heart program – the will and faith of our own souls – the strength of a healthy marriage – friends and family that were there every step of the way we made it through. I took a long time to feel safe and balanced after this fight. He is a perfectly healthy and radiant 2 and a half year old child. As if nothing ever happened. So many families and children do not have this. We must fight for them and their health care so that they will have the God given right to a healthy and happy future. Thank you. 💜❤️💜❤️💜

A post shared by Jaime King (@jaime_king) on

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In August 2016, King spoke of her son’s condition on Instagram — and shared a photo of a letter from Cedars-Sinai Hospital revealing that her son’s godmother, Taylor Swift (yes, that Taylor Swift) had made a donation in his name to the Los Angeles institution. Swift and Leo obviously have a pretty tight bond. Check out this pure sweetness.

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What love looks like… LT and TS ♥️

A post shared by Jaime King (@jaime_king) on

We love this family — including fairy godmother Tay-Tay.

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