The two previous times Kenan was in Israel for cardiac treatment, he was with his grandmother. When Kenan came to Sheba today, I went to look for his grandmother’s familiar face but was surprised to find a young woman holding him in her arms; it was his mother!
Often times when a newborn comes urgently from Gaza, it is a grandmother who is the accompanying guardian, but as in many cases now, after a child comes many times to Sheba, we get to meet the child’s mother. With every urgent newborn, and Kenan was one of them, my mind goes to the mother. I wonder what it must have been like to have her baby, then find out he needs urgent surgery and within a few days, have to give them up to a different and even an enemy country for treatment. We see many urgent children and yet they remain individuals. Still, the reality is, for each of these babies, there is a mother somewhere in Gaza who is agonizing over the fate of her own little one. So, like I said, the joyful occasion of these returning Gaza babies is that you meet more of their families, particularly the mothers whom we think so much about.