Remember how confindent I was that Maddy is the sweetest, most angelic child you could possibly meet?
I’m starting to think I was wrong.
He throws things, spits medicine at nurses, and will pinch most anyone who approaches his ICU bed. Of course, when a nurse pinched him back he only giggled hysterically. Maybe it’s just the drugs?
Granted, he did have his ribcage sawed apart, pried open, and then had his insides tinkered with. I’d probably be pretty grumpy if I were in his position. Teddy Grahams and M&M candies made him smile, so at least we know of some way to bribe a smile out of him.
The most important thing, though, is that he is being released to the step-down unit; he’ll be watched a bit longer and then—assuming there aren’t any surprises—he and his grandmother will go home.
Maddy’s newly-healed heart is a source of great joy for us. If you hadn’t already heard, he is our 300th lifesaving heart surgery to date, and we’re celebrating that this Christmas by stocking up on medical supplies.
You can help us do this. God-willing, by this time next year we’ll have saved another 300 children. That means we’ll double our total lives saved in just one year!
To help us make this massive leap forward for Iraqi kids, donate below:
$9—Stitch a Heart
Our partner surgeons use high-quality stitches (called “sutures”) to fix leaky heart valves, sew up holes, and close up wounds after surgery. For just $9, you can help us save a child’s life—perfect for an office party or stocking stuffer!
$50—Patch a Heart
Our partner surgeons and nurses make heart patches for each child during their operation from a sheet of material called “Gore-Tex.” For just $50, you can fill the gap in a child’s heart and help save their life!
$500—Package of Patches
Your gift will help us buy enough material to create the patches and change the lives of ten children suffering from life-threatening holes in the walls of their hearts.
Your gift will help us buy all the medicines, sutures, patches and a portion of the airfare for our doctors and nurses required to save one child’s life on our next Remedy Mission. In partnership with the Iraqi government, $1,000 is roughly what it costs PLC to save a life in Iraq.
Start Your Own Fundraiser Online Today!
You may feel like you only have a few dollars, but when you combine your best with those closest to you, you will quickly find that you can patch a heart—or fund an entire heart surgery—as a group. Click here to get started –>
Our girl Zahraa was sent up from the ICU to the ward today. She’s the first child from this mission to make it out of the ICU, and she’s almost certain to be the first to go home.
We’re now halfway through Remedy Mission XIII, and today is our midway break day. Last mission we visited Babylon and one of Saddam’s old palaces, but today the team is just relaxing around the hotel and getting some rest.
It’s this halfway point, though, when the ICU begins getting full, and we have to wait for children like Zahraa to get well enough to leave the ICU before the team performs more surgery. If there aren’t available beds, the children can’t be cared for after their heart is fixed. In short, please pray for the children who are recovering. Right now there are four in the ICU, and they’re all doing fairly well.
Thanks for your support and encouragement during these missions. You’ve helped us get so far, so keep tracking with us and we’ll have more updates for you when surgeries begin again tomorrow!
He made it!
The operation went well. Other than that, there isn’t much to say. Now it’s just rest-time in the ICU.
February 20, 2012 by matt · Comments Off
Good news! Zahraa (AKA the girl in the red coat) made it through surgery and is now in the ICU resting up.
In an effort to cheer her up, the ICU nurses gave her Dora the Explorer stickers and have been singing the theme song with her. It was a sweet moment, but now I can’t get that song out of my head!
Zahraa’s operation went so well that they are releasing her from the ICU soon. She will then spend a day or two in the ward, and after that she goes home!
I plan to visit the family’s hospital room after Zahraa is released, so come back tomorrow to hear more about this precious little girl and her trek toward recovery.
Come on, vamanos!
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!
January 19, 2012 by Cody · Comments Off
Ali was just brought out of the operating theater and into the ICU—with a mended heart!
The next 24 hours will be absolutely crucial for Ali, though. The operation was a complete success, but now we have to wait to see how his heart and the rest of his body will respond.
I ran into the ICU so I could take the above photo of Ali and show it to his mother. She was ecstatic to see her little boy!
Who knows what will happen next—Ali could be up walking around as soon as tomorrow!
January 12, 2012 by Cody · Comments Off
Amjed is the first child to breeze through his heart operation and begin his recovery in the ICU today! Right now he has the entire ICU to himself but it’s about to get crowded fast. More are on their way!
February 19, 2011 by Cody · Comments Off
Alawi was taken into the Intensive Care Unit where he’s one step closer to receiving what we hope to be a fully corrective heart surgery!
Two things constantly amaze me during Remedy Missions.
The skill and care of the doctors and nurses and the bravery of these children.
Alawi’s one of the bravest I’ve met so far.
As Alawi was carried into the ICU and began treatments, you could tell that he felt uncomfortable but there was something in his eyes that made me think he knew that all of this was going to make him stronger.
Maybe it was the way he sat straight up and patiently waited as they began prepping him for surgery or the way he pushed the nurse’s hands away from the oxygen mask and held it over his mouth by himself, breathing in and out. As he took deep breathes of the oxygen coming from the mask his eyes would dart around and he would shift on the bed when something hurt or made him uncomfortable.
Other times his eyes would squint as his cheeks raised, revealing a grin under the clear mask.
I could only grin back as I told him I’d see him after he the doctors fix his heart.
Brave Alawi’s one step closer to the remedy and we can’t wait to see that grin again!
Be the first to see it tomorrow on our Facebook Page! Like it, post it, share it, and join the Remedy!
December 16, 2010 by Cody · Comments Off
Zahran decided she didn’t want to waste any time in the ICU after surgery!
A life-saving shunt was placed near her heart to increase the blood flow to her lungs. Before the surgery, she would struggle to breathe and the only thing her mother could do was to lift her legs up to ease the tension on her heart.
Today, her mother was able to carry her around the ICU before she was taken to the hospital ward to be with Fatima, Ritha, and Anwar!’
December 13, 2010 by Cody · Comments Off
Hassan’s surgery was a success!
When the doctors first looked at Hassan’s heart, he had multiple defects. When they were done with the operation, they had corrected each one of those defects and could only describe his heart as whole and complete!
Now Hassan is resting in the ICU, next to Ahmed, where the nurses continue to monitor how the rest of his body responds to his new and fully functioning heart.
Hassan’s wait for his surgery is finally over. Now all we’re waiting for is his return to his family.