It is a wondrous thing to hear your child’s heart beat for the first time. All those long hours of laboring and toiling over a workbench, all those days and weeks of tenderly, gingerly nudging gears and springs and cogs into place. All those blisters and burns and tiny cuts, they all pay off when that heart has been installed in your child’s chest and brought to brilliant, beating life.

There is no greater wonder than hearing that rhythmic lub-dub, that beat that sends lifeblood coursing through your child’s veins. It is an experience like no other, one that shakes you down to the very marrow of your bones.

But with wonder there is often mystery. And pain. It is one thing to build a heartstone to continue — even restore — life. It is quite another to build one to create life.

I only hope that this time I will be successful. I only hope that this time I will not have to cast my child’s body into the corner with all the others.

There is much work yet to be done.

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