(WSVN) - Evidence of a father’s love for his son is now tattooed on his chest.
According to Fox News, Martin Watts’ 6-year-old son Joey was diagnosed with supravalvular aortic stenosis.
The condition develops before birth and causes the narrowing of the large blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body,” according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. If left untreated, the condition can lead to shortness of breath, chest pain and ultimately heart failure.
Joey’s older brother Harley, 7, was diagnosed with the condition while still in the womb. However, Joey’s condition was discovered 14 weeks after he was born.
“From when they were first born, they told me there was nothing they could do, we would just have to live with it,” said Leanne Watts, the boys’ mother. “I was told they could both pass away at any given point. Joey’s condition progressed rapidly. They said if we didn’t try something now, the inevitable will be sooner rather than later.”
Joey underwent a life-saving eight-hour heart surgery last month. Joey’s surgery was a success, and his parents said he is now recovering.
To celebrate his son’s successful surgery, Martin Watts got a 3.5 inch tattoo that looks like his son’s surgery scar.
“It’s not easy for a 6-year-old boy or any child of any age to have that type of surgery,” Leanne Watts, the boy’s mother said. “When Joey saw the scar, he just said, ‘Is this where they have cut me to fix my heart?’ We’ve told him it should be something to be proud of, and he shouldn’t be ashamed by what has happened to him.”
Joey is now recovering at home, but he faces future procedures. Harley is scheduled to undergo surgery later this year.
The boys’ mother said the tattoo gives the boys confidence about their surgeries.
“It’s absolutely fantastic. It just shows him it’s nothing to be scared of and that he should be proud of what he has achieved in life,” she said.
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