Owner and founder of Baby Hearts Press, Anna Jaworski is the mother of a young adult with a complex, congenital heart defect known as hypo-plastic left heart syndrome. As a concerned mother, she looked for resources to help her understand her son's condition. In 1994, those resources were nowhere to be found, so Anna started writing resources and making them available to parents everywhere.
Anna's first book was Hypo-plastic Left Heart Syndrome: A Handbook for Parents. The book has been reviewed by Library Journal twice and has become a staple in many hospitals that treat children with hypo-plastic left heart syndrome.
While preparing Alex and Joey for Alex's second open-heart surgery, Anna sought resources to help her older son, Joey. At the time Joey was a toddler and he was extremely affected by being separated from the family during Alex's first, emergency surgery. Anna hoped to find a book to help Joey through another surgery and hospitalization. She couldn't find the resource she was looking for in print. There was a book that looked promising, but it was out of print and not available at her local library or through inter-library loan. After Alex recovered from his second open-heart surgery, Anna decided that she needed to put together a resource for families like hers. My Brother Needs an Operation is Baby Hearts Press only children's book. It tells Joey's story and also has a place in the back of the book for the reader to share his or her own experience, making it a keepsake book for the whole family.
Anna met many people from around the world thanks to the internet beginning in the late 1990s. She also helped start a support group in Austin. That support group, Milagros, enabled Anna to meet people locally who had children with congenital heart defects. With the support of fellow heart mom, Jane Hunt, Anna decided to publish a book for other heart mothers that told their stories. The result was The Heart of a Mother which Anna published in Panama City Beach, Florida. Upon returning to her beloved Texas, Anna started working on The Heart of a Father: Essays by Men Affected by Congenital Heart Defects. This companion book to The Heart of a Mother contains essays and poems by over 50 men from around the world. Many of the men were husbands to the women who wrote for The Heart of a Mother so readers can see what happened to the children they were introduced to in the mothers' book. After Bob Daigneault became the co-editor, the book was finally published in 2009.
Milagros also helped Anna start a whole new adventure -- public speaking! Anna was Milagros' first speaker at their first support group meeting. Since then Anna has spoken across the United States and in Canada. In 2001 Anna joined Toastmasters International and today she is a Distinguished Toastmaster, which is the highest designation any Toastmaster can earn.
Anna has written numerous articles and contributed to two medical textbooks. She has served as a witness in a federal court case. She has also had the joy of personally meeting people from around the world -- heart heroes and warriors she is happy to call friends.
In July 2013 Anna got a phone call that would change her life. Josh Bernstein from VoiceAmerica called Anna to talk about the possibility of being a Host on a talk radio show. That phone call was the beginning of Anna's life as the Host of "Heart to Heart with Anna." Anna really enjoyed working with the Voice America staff but for financial reasons, she had to leave at the end of her first season.
Anna moved the entire first season of shows over to Blog Talk Radio in 2014. She edited the shows and added another segment to the end of every show which was then re-broadcast with the new live segment. Some of the former Guests returned and some of the shows featured callers to the show or questions from Listeners.
The theme for Season One of "Heart to Heart with Anna" was You Are Not Alone. The theme for Season Two is There is Hope. You can listen to "Heart to Heart with Anna" by going to the "Heart to Heart with Anna" Blog Talk Radio website. All of the shows are on there. You can also visit the "Heart to Heart with Anna" website for more information.
Anna was the Keynote Speaker at this conference on October 12, 2019.
Enjoy these videos from the conference.
Enjoy these videos from the conference.