This little day-dreamer’s name is Zahraa. She’s 6 years old, and—you guessed it!—she really needs a heart surgery.
I only had limited time with Zahraa and her family before she was whisked away for surgery, but the parents seemed terrified for their daughter. A local doctor saw me watching them and shared, “They’re very poor. They don’t know anything at all about the outside world.”
This was a great reminder of the faith these parents have when they give their kids over to us for treatment. I’m sure it takes serious guts to pass your kid off to trained professionals whom you trust and know to be effective (and can communicate with), but to give your kid to strangers from another country? To people who dress, talk, and act in a way that is totally bizarre to you? Maybe even offensive?
I don’t envy them, but I do admire their courage.
Both daughter and her mother, as if on cue, burst into tears as Zahraa was pulled away and taken to the operating room.
Please pray that her surgery goes well, and we’ll have a video update on her progress for you in a few hours.
I honestly couldn’t help myself when I saw Yousf and his cheeks. I’m a pretty disciplined person, and I live a fairly regimented life. But his cuteness overwhelmed me and my discipline went out the window!
I normally wouldn’t interact too much with a child in his mother’s arms in a conservative place like Fallujah. But Yousef isn’t your “normal” kind of cute, either.
Within a short time we were playing peek-a-boo, holding hands, and watching Toy Story on the PLC iPad (thanks for helping us buy such an amazing tool for appeasing sick children in the hospital!)
Nurse Molly and Shannon administered Yousef’s sedatives in preparation for his upcoming procedure. He didn’t like the taste too much but we were soon back to playing.
As he sat there trying to figure me out—this impossibly white, foreign hairless guy—his meds kicked in.
Have you ever seen kids fall asleep at the dinner table? My parents have a great photo of me face down in mom’s spaghetti. Yousef was headed that direction. Sitting up looking me square in the eyes, he would slowly fall over, dozing off. He’d gather himself, sit up, and do it all over again.
I try not to play favorites… but come on! Look at those cheeks! Come back tomorrow to see more of this adorable little boy and to hear how his operation went. More to come…
Our 85 suture kits are FULLY funded — Thank you for helping fund $765 worth of medical supplies!
January 20, 2012 by Cody · Comments Off
Does this look like a boy who just had an open heart surgery 26 hours ago? I didn’t think so!
I got a phone call from Ali early this morning telling me not to bother looking for him in the ICU anymore. I walked into the hospital to find him walking around in the ward!
Not only that, but he was already asking me when he can go home. Ali still really wants to be a doctor, so maybe one day he’ll understand how important this time is in the hospital.
But I love that he’s still a 12 year-old boy who can’t wait to go home and play soccer with his friends. At this rate, who knows, he could even be home by tomorrow!