Our co-worker Amar, an incoming Gaza children-coordinator, received a surprising call this morning: Toleen was ready for discharge!
Somewhat unbelieving, co-worker Erika and I headed to Sheba Medical Center to see if this was true— and to make sure that Toleen and her father were really and truly ready for discharge!
Sweet little Toleen was stable and unfazed, napping in her hospital crib. Her vital signs were good, she was eating well, and she had not had any seizures since the medication was begun. Her father was a whirlwind of activity; receiving discharge medications and instructions; figuring out how to connect the stroller and infant carrier; packing and loading bags of necessary supplies; and confirming that the essential documents were in order.
Finally, we packed the van (full!) and placed our precious cargo snugly in an infant car seat for the hour-plus trip. Both Erika and dad watched Toleen in the back seat as we drove to the Erez crossing during late-afternoon traffic.
A few anxious moments occurred in the van when we realized that Toleen actually did not have permission to enter Gaza (common when a critical newborn requires ambulance transfer to Israel). We prayed, and in faith, kept driving.
At the border, all papers were checked— including an extra one that we had asked for last minute at the hospital, confirming Toleen’s dates of hospitalization. In record time (less than 30 minutes), we were given permission to help load everything in a cart, and Toleen was wheeled by her papa into Gaza.
As you can see, Toleen gave us a little good-bye smile before she left!
Please pray with us that Toleen will do well in quarantine, soon be united with her mother and siblings, and be able to return to Israel for scheduled follow up in a few months.