About three weeks ago our community sat around the dinner table, Pesach was starting and the ministry of interior had not yet given permission for a two month old, whose window of time for a successful surgery was running out, to come to Israel. But in that time God worked miraculously to provide a visa in time for this baby, Roman, to come while he was still operable. Diana and I had the privilege of being with him and his beautiful mother today as he went in for surgery. He became unstable yesterday afternoon, so initially we thought his emergency surgery would be last night, but he stabilized and they held off until first thing this morning. Diana and I got to the hospital at 8, but the ICU nurse, Keren, told us that his surgery was not next to the pediatric cardiac ICU per usual, but instead was taken to a building nearby.
Thankfully Diana had been there before so we found Roman’s mother who was with Birhat’s mom just after they had taken him into surgery. We were told to expect a four to five hour wait, and Diana knew just how to comfort Roman’s mom, through reassuring embraces and words of affirmation (in Kurdish!) Diana was a blessing to this sweet mum throughout the intense wait. Much to our surprise, Roman was out of surgery in three hours; we rushed to follow the bed, doctors and machinery that hurried out of the Operating Room, to a transportation vehicle waiting outside to take him to the Children’s hospital.
As the doctors, with Roman unconscious in the bed, crammed into the back of the ambulance, they were saying that everything is good, as they must have understood the overwhelming sight before us. They also asked mum to come with them, and before she took one step she looked at Diana and said, “Bash?” Kurdish for “Good?”. And Diana replied “Bash”. It’s impossible for me to describe her face at that moment. Only that I wish that same reaction for every parent who watches their child come out of the OR. It was relief after prolonged waiting, yes, but more than that it was the culmination of audacious hope; whether whispered in prayer or shouted in sorrow when no hope seemed to be left, and God has heard.