Today I went with Mohaned and his mother to a pulmonary appointment at Sheba Hospital. We had a lot of fun while we were waiting, and also during the conversation with the doctor Mohaned was very active and enthusiastic. After the conversation with the doctor which was very positive, because Mohaned is doing very well at the moment, we had another appointment with a physiotherapist.
Here Mohaned’s mother learned some exercises she can do to help Mohaned to make his lungs stronger. He did not have fun with all the exercises, but it was all good again when he was allowed to blow up a plastic glove.
We praise God that Mohaned is doing so well and that we could have a very nice and exciting day today.
Our cute Mohaned is discharged to go home. He feels so much better now. He is laughing and running around which is so much better than the last time I saw him when he only cried. His mother is also very happy that she can go home.
I pray that Mohaned will be stable until his next follow-up appointment in a couple of months.
Antibiotics against infection
Today I visited Mohaned at Sheba Medical Center. Two days ago he was admitted because of a high fever and now the doctors want to find out what the cause of the fever is. That’s why they are doing tests, like blood cultures now. No result so far, but Mohaned is doing a little better.
In his room we looked at pictures together on my cell phone and when I took the cell phone out of his hands for a moment to take a picture of him, he was very outraged. You can see his outrage in the picture.
Overall, however, the joy that Mohaned is on the mend, prevailed. Thank God!
After a few days with Mohaned in our house, we finally took him today to Sheba Hospital for his echo and the postponed dietary appointment. However, we had to wait several hours for his echo as his doctor was very busy. In the end, Mohaned was really tired and cried a few times but still it was easy to make him laugh again by playing with him.
Once the doctor was finally able to see him, she started making fun with Mohaned and he enjoyed the visit to the doctor so much better. He is doing really fine and will hopefully come back in four months for another echo. He will also get an MRI in the future as a preparation for the Fontan surgery. Because we saw the doctor so late, Mohaned wasn’t able to see his other doctor at the dietary. For this reason, it had to be postponed again.
After a long day, we finally reached Ashdod again where Mohaned and his mother will stay with us until tomorrow. Then he will finally have his dietary appointment and can hopefully go home with his mother. Even so we are happy to have them in our house and are always enjoying our time with Mohaned, we are glad that they can go home soon. Please pray for him and his mother and the appointment tomorrow.
Today was a very long day for our little friend Mohaned. When we picked him up from Gaza, he was very tired and agitated, which lasted until we were in the Echo room at Sheba Hospital. But we managed to calm him down a little so he wouldn‘t be that scared of the Echo-machine. He was even kind of happy when he got the chance to play a bit with it.
When we were done with Mohaned’s appointments, his doctor told us that everything is fine and he just has to come back for a check-up-Echo in four months. When we heard that, we were very relieved and could enjoy the playtime in the waiting area. We will definitely miss cute Mohaned and are looking forward to seeing him again in four months!
Heavenly father, we want to thank you so much for little Mohaned and that we got to know him. Thank you, that he does so well, that he could go home today.
Good echo, pulmonologist appointment needed
Today, coworker Joanne and I picked up a very happy Mohaned and his mother at Erez Border Crossing. Mohaned was smiling the whole drive, including every time I turned around to look back at him.
During his echo, Mohaned was very skeptical and screaming a lot. When it was done, his mother gave him some crackers and he was happy again.
The doctor looked at the echo and the ECG, which showed that Mohaned’s heart is in a generally good condition. But his right lung doesn’t look very good. So, we organized a pulmonology appointment for tomorrow. Mohaned and his mother will stay over night in our home in Ashdod for this appointment.
Each time I’m in the echo room with a child, I’m impressed by the methods used by mothers in calming down their children.
Especially with Mohaned’s mother, I was impressed. She was so loving and patient while at his side and gave him comfort, so he finally really stopped crying.
I’m sure we will enjoy the short time with cute Mohaned and his lovely mother in Ashdod. Hopefully his pulmonologist follow-up tomorrow will go well and they can help him. Thank you for your prayers.
After we missed little Mohaned’s appointment at Sheba Hospital’s Pulmonary clinic yesterday due to late permission to enter Israel at the Erez Border crossing, Mohaned and his lovely mother stayed with us in our Jaffa guesthouse.
So today was his follow up with the doctor in the Pulmonary Clinic.
After some time it turned out that Mohaned is in a very good condition. The doctor sent us to respiratory physical therapy and little Mohaned got an inhalation and some other assessments.
After two months there will be a check-up again. Please pray that his condition keeps going so well.
Mohaned underwent a bronchoscopy at Sheba hospital to help in the treatment of an existing chronic pulmonary disorder. The procedure was quite short. Mohaned’s mother said she knew this procedure wouldn’t turn into anything big like an open-heart surgery, nonetheless she was anxious when the doctors started the bronchoscopy and she had to leave the room.
When they came for a cath two weeks ago, Mohaned’s mother thought she would be returning home in a matter of days, but Mohaned has stayed in the hospital because of the complex issues with his lungs.
As we’ve all written before, Mohaned’s mom is one incredible lady; she’s competent, confident, and caring. She is like a sister to many of us, and of course Mohaned is our ‘schlingel’ (German for rascal).
After the procedure, he was at it again, looking for things to play with like a small foam ball and at one point his inhaler. He is so precious; I can’t help but think of the long months when he was a newborn, and all of the work required to keep him alive even after he left the hospital. Now he is almost walking! His face, while older, is still reminiscent of the small baby who loved being held.
He still needs much care for his heart and lungs, and it is always a joy to do it. Please continue to pray for his life. Mohaned is so very loved.
Completely a changed boy in hospital
We are all very happy to have our little Schlingel and his loving mother back with us, because we missed them very much.
However, we aren’t happy as much as we are concerned that Mohaned is not doing very well since he came back from the hospital. In the last few days, he has been crying almost all the time and has hardly been quiet for a minute. That’s why we took him to the hospital today for an Echo and an ECG so that the doctors can check if everything is all right with him. The result was that nothing was abnormal.
During the examinations Mohaned cried a lot, but his loving mum took care of him and tried to calm him down with milk and a dummy. This worked reasonably well. The nurses and doctors also lovingly took care of him and tried to distract him during the examinations.
Our whole team in Jaffa agrees that Mohaned is a completely different boy in the hospital. When he is not in the examinations, he is always totally quiet and you hardly notice that he is there. The little rascal seems to love the hospital. The friendly doctor, who also speaks Arabic, patiently answered all the mother’s questions and encouraged her that Mohaned is no worse off than the day he was discharged.
She suspects that Mohaned probably has post-operative pain, headaches and toothaches because he is getting his teeth at the moment. To alleviate this, it is important that the mother continues physiotherapy for him and that little precious Mohaned sleeps in a higher position. This should alleviate his headaches.
On Sunday, Mohaned is due to come to the hospital for another Echo and ECG. Please pray that his loving mother will do the physiotherapy by then, and the little rascal can rest a little.
Happily discharged to Jaffa
Today co-worker Sabrina and I were visiting our happy boy Mohaned and his wonderful mother in Sheba Hospital. His mother is always so pleased to see all of us when we come to the hospital ward. It was the same way today. She welcomed us, embraced us, and said in English, “I miss you!” Such lovely greetings for our coming.
Our sweet boy Mohaned was sleeping peacefully during this time. But not for long. After some time, he woke and did not want to stay in his bed. My co-worker Sabrina took him in her arms. He loved it and stayed quiet for a long time. It is unusual for him not to cry a lot. Thank God for healing our sweet boy. Yes, the general condition of Mohaned is very good and his recovery after surgery is complete. What a blessing.
Mohaned’s mother was waiting to find out if Mohaned would be discharged from the hospital today and I discovered that he was being disharged to the Jaffa house, which made his mother very happy. Plus the hospital gifted Mohaned and his mother with a brand new stroller. What a blessing.
Everyone at the community house was happy to see Schlingel back home! He and his mother will stay with us one week more at which time he will have a cardio check-up at Sheba centre.
Thank you so much for all your prayers and support! We see a miracle story where Mohaned is concerned. We are so thankful.
Mum's comfort is the best comfort
When I went to Sheba hospital this morning, knowing that one of my tasks would be to visit our little “Schlingel” and his loving mum, I was already looking forward to it. We all miss the little “happy boy” and his mum with her humour and her sometimes funny crazy way with us, very much .
When I came to their room in the Secondary Pediatric ICU today, little Mohaned was not in a good mood. His loving mother told me that he has a fever and is difficult to calm down at the moment; he hardly sleeps. When I took him in my arms, even his crying was nice for me because it was the first time I visited him and his mum after his risky operation.
I tried to calm him down by feeding him milk and giving him his dummy. He drank the milk, but after a few minutes, he threw up and couldn’t keep it down. Only when his mother, who always looks after him lovingly, took him in her arms, did he calm down and fall asleep. There is no better comfort than that of a mother. “As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; And you will be comforted in Jerusalem.” Isaiah 66:13
After some time, two nurses came to his room to perform examinations on him, hoping to find out why Mohaned has a fever and what could be wrong with him.
They asked me and Mohaned’s mother to leave the room because it is not nice to see. So I went to visit some other children who are in hospital at the moment. When I came back, this adorable smile was beaming at me. When I was still in the hospital, no results were visible through the examinations.
Let us all support this young mother, who gets so much patience and strength from God, and her little Mohaned in prayer.
After a big surgery on his small heart, Mohaned was moved today from the Pediatric ICU Depotament to the Secondary ICU at Sheba Medical Centre.
The lovely baby boy had a fever last night. But praise the Lord, he is getting better. Also he was extubated. He still needs oxygen via his nose however, and he doesn’t like it at all. When the baby is awake, he takes it away. The nurses have enough to do with him. Also his mother, who is at all times by his side, is a pleasant person throughout all of it. She is always so thankful and she is happy to see her beloved son’s recovery.
Please keep praying for this wonderful child and his mother.
Our little “Schlingel” (German for rascal) went back to Sheba hospital today. We very much enjoyed the days in our community house in Jaffa with our little happy boy and his loving and very friendly mother and had a great time together. Each one of us has taken them both into our hearts and it’s as if they are part of the family. How can you not fall in love with that happy smile?
When I took them to Sheba hospital today they had to have a Corona test and wait a long time for the results. However, the wait was worth it because the Corona test was negative.
Tomorrow will be a big day for our precious little Mohaned and his mother. A complicated operation will be performed, which is associated with high risk for Mohaned. But we can know with confidence that everything is in God’s hands and we know that He has the best plan for this little boy’s life.
Your prayers for his worried mother, and for precious Mohaned’s surgery day tomorrow, are very much appreciated. Please pray that God will provide the doctors with wisdom and patience and strength and that the surgery will go as God has planned. For there is no better plan for our lives than His.
A stressful day for Mohaned
Our Mohaned had today a few appointments in the Sheba Hospital. The day started early then we could complete the schedule of the day.
As always at Sheba Hospital, there are many people and they are all waiting. Thank God, for Mohaned’s first appointment, we did not wait too long ourselves. It was the physiotherapy appointment. Mohaned doesn’t like physiotherapy at all. But the therapist explained to us how important this particular therapy is for his lungs and breathing. He became so tired after this appointment, he fell asleep directly. So we had to wait a bit for Mohaned’s next examination.
Before his Echo-cardiogram, Mohaned’s vital parameters were checked and an ECG written. While he was on the examination couch , Mohaned was crying. His mother had to comfort him a lot and had to stay by his side. He was peaceful only when in her arms.
A Cardiac doctor inspected Mohaned. She found his condition to be better than before and his Echo results confirmed it. The doctor is therefore planning a Catheterization for this beloved boy at some point in the near future. Thanks for keeping him in your prayers.
It is the day after little Mohaned gave us so much worry and we rushed him to the ER at Sheba Hospital. I am happy to report that he was smiling today during our visit, he didn’t look so ill. I could take Mohaned in my arms. We played with each other. He loved it and was laughing.
But sometimes his mood changed. When he started to cry , he chucked his pacifier to the floor. In German, we have a word for such a rascal, it is “Schlingel!” Our little Mohaned is a bit of a Schlingel, but precious just the same.
We could get a lot of information about Mohaned’s condition. The doctors said his lungs are not doing well. He will stay in the hospital over the weekend and they will discuss a possible new Catheterization for him.
Please keep praying for him and his mother.
When I woke up this morning I had a feeling that this day was not going to go as originally planned. Many days at Shevet Achim don’t go as planned (at least from a human perspective), which makes each day exciting and varied in its own right. But God knows exactly what tasks we will face during the day and how we can accomplish them with Him.
Co-worker Carina and I were cleaning our refrigerator and Mohaned’s mother was making a dessert when precious little Mohaned woke up from his sleep and cried. Since his loving mom was in the middle of doing, I took the little one to calm him down. I gave him his bottle of milk, he calmed down and rested in my arms.
While doing so, I noticed that his head was unusually warm and I asked Co-worker Carina to please check his temperature. My suspicion that he might have a fever was confirmed. Because he had a temperature of 38.1°. Co-worker Carina then gave him Paracetamol, but unfortunately that didn’t help much, because the little man just spit it out. After a while he threw up and there was blood in the vomit, so we decided to take him to the Emergency Room.
I drove him and his mother there and on the way Mohaned was thankfully calm and didn’t throw up again. His loving mother and this precious sweet boy have to stay in the hospital now and the doctors are trying to find out what is wrong with him.
Please pray for the otherwise happy boy, that it can be found out what is wrong and he can be helped. Also please pray for his loving and concerned mommy, for peace about the situation.
Behold how good and pleasant it is
Mohaned’s mother is keen to learn English, and some of the phrases that she has picked up from us are “lovely boy” and “happy boy.” Of course, there are a hundred ways to describe this beloved baby, but lovely and happy are the words which she hears the most.
He is a joy for everyone who spends time with him, and is so sociable, which makes it ever so sad to see him upset. Today’s hospital trip was firstly to the Cardiology Department, later to the Pulmonary Department, and finally for a quick Physiotherapy session.
Mohaned’s complex heart condition required a detailed, and therefore long Echocardiogram. He hated every second of it, crying non-stop until it was over and his mother gathered him into her arms. Thankfully, the cardiologist found him to be in a reasonable condition, and Mohaned will see the Doctor again in two weeks, just before his next Catheterization.
The pulmonologist was a different person from the appointment last fortnight, although she has known Mohaned from his first hospitalization period. She was amazed to see how he had grown, and was pleased to observe how he is developing; he is starting to wave, clap and reach out to take and explore objects. She explained his condition to the mother, and was very optimistic that with the continued inhalations and physiotherapy, they could expect a normal future for his health.
Physiotherapy is a tough one for Mohaned, who fights against it every time. Sadly, when the physiotherapist puts pressure on his chest to help him clear his lungs, it is very distressing for Mohaned. He cries ever so much, and his mum leant into me and clutched onto my hand as she watched her baby’s face turn dark in colour as he cried. She bravely stepped up to the therapy task and will continue to attend the physiotherapy sessions to learn how to do this.
Of course, it has been an enjoyable time in the company of Mohaned and his mum. She is a kind-hearted person, and like Mohaned, is very sociable, and friendly to all. She comforts other mums when they are distressed about their children, she helps wherever she can, and invites our staff to eat meals with them in the Shevet half-way house.
She puts action to Psalm 133: Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity.
Thank God that we are seeing the truth of this verse, through the beautiful heart of the mother of Mohaned. It is very encouraging. May she too see God revealed, as we see more of Him revealed through knowing her.
Physiotherapy day for Mohaned
After Mohaned had his catherization last Thursday, he thankfully was discharged to our home in Jaffa the next day. The precious boy and his lovely mother enjoyed their time with us a lot. They went out to the beach together with some of us and with some of the waiting or convalescing Kurdish families that are in our Jaffa coastal home right now.
Mohaned is a lovely, happy boy who smiles almost all the time and he really loves it when you talk to him or smile at him and you’ll definitely receive the cutest-ever smile back.
Today he needed to return to Sheba Hospital to receive some physiotherapy. Two hours before this however, he sadly wasn’t allowed to eat anything which caused him to be very upset and to cry after waiting for about an hour until his treatment began.
During the physiotherapy, he cried because of course he didn’t liked it at all, but it needed to be done. The physiotherapist showed Mohaned’s mother how to do the physiotherapy with Mohaned as well, which is good. Happy boy Mohaned (most of the time) and his gentle mother, need to come to the hospital around three times a week for the physiotherapy so that his mother becomes accustomed to it.
Tomorrow, Mohaned will receive an Echo and an appointment will be made with his pulmonary doctor. Thank God that slowly, slowly, Mohaned is improving. Thank you for your prayers.
A long road ahead, but worth it
After an interventional Catheterization yesterday, Mohaned returned to our Jaffa house today where he will be for another month before his next Catheterization.
During the time he is with us, Mohaned’s mum will be learning how to do the physiotherapy that is so important for his lungs. She’s said that as long as Mohaned is okay, it doesn’t matter the time that they are here.
His mother is not alone in her commitment to him. The doctors who are treating him are truly incredible and are doing everything they can to help him. So many people are contributing to saving his life.
Tonight, the three Gaza families staying in Jaffa, including Mohaned and his mum, ate dinner with our modest number of Shevet staff. It was a good way to end the day, and even though Mohaned still has a long road ahead, it is all worth it for him.
Catheterization day for Mohaned
Mohaned was the first to have a Catheterization at Sheba Medical today. When co-worker Sabrina and I went to visit, he was already in the intervention. His mother was so worried about him, which caused her a sleepless night. The young mother looked very tired. But she wanted to wait for her lovely son there, where she had to leave him with the doctors.
She needed some diversion. So we decided go outside in the fresh air for a walk. It was still morning , the weather was sunny but not so warm – refreshing. His mother was pleased to be outside, to take a deep breath and enjoyed seeing the park on the hospital grounds. After we went back to the waiting area on the fourth floor, we drank coffee together and even if I don’t speak Arabic and she doesn’t speak English, thank God, we were able to talk together at least a little bit with hand and feet.
We were waiting for three hours and then Mohaned came back from his cath. At first he was peacefully sleeping, but after a short while, he started crying; his pacifier didn’t calm him down, sadly. He needed the inhalation after the intervention, which quieted for a short time.
His vital signs were good and he didn’t need oxygen. The doctors said it was a difficult but effective cath. Please pray for our precious little Mohaned and his lovely mother for the next 24 hours, that there won’t be any complications and he can be discharged tomorrow.
Mohaned’s catheterization has been rescheduled for tomorrow. So today, he and his mum had another corona test (both negative), and after some time waiting, settled into their room in Sheba hospital.
Mohaned’s mum is quite worried about the catheterization, as although it’s not his first intervention, it is the first one which she will be there with him for. She is a little nervous about the hospital also, but is growing in confidence, and has a fun sense of humour, happily congratulating herself on carrying out some tasks independently. It has been so good to enjoy her company at our Jaffa community house over the past few days, and we hope and pray that Mohaned’s catheterization will be successful tomorrow.
Mohaned and his mother spent a couple of days with us at the Shevet halfway house in Jaffa. His mother was open-minded and helpful with cooking or cleaning up.
Mohaned is a very lovely boy. He has a beautiful smile. Everyone was excited to see him. But he was crying a lot. We gave his mother some rest by holding Mohaned in our arms or playing with him.
Mohaned and his mother went to the hospital today, ahead of a catheterization tomorrow. It was a long day for them, because they had to wait for quite some time for their Corona Test, and then get to their room.
We bless Mohaned and his mother with good rest and patience!
Welcome back little Mohaned
It has taken many months, but finally, Mohaned and his mother were granted permission to enter Israel, returning from Gaza to hospital for a follow-up appointment. Their appointment was yesterday, but they were only able to arrive in Israel today, late in the evening. Thankfully, the Cardiac and Pulmonary Departments both agreed to reschedule his appointments for today.
Mohaned’s mother stayed at our Jerusalem Guest House last night, which was very exciting for me and co-worker Alena, who both called in for a video-chat to see Mohaned again and meet his mum.
Today, Mohaned, mum and co-worker Berith, all traveled to Sheba hospital. Berith told me that this is Mohaned’s mum’s first time out of Gaza, and the first time she has been somewhere without her family or husband, so this is a big day for her as well, and a reminder of the privilege we have to be entrusted with the care of not only Mohaned, but also his mother, away from home. She is a very brave and positive lady, attentive to Mohaned and keen to learn about his condition from the doctors.
The cardiologist (and I) was shocked to learn that Mohaned has only visited the cardiologist in Gaza once since his return, and only had his oxygen saturation checked once. He has not been receiving any medications or physiotherapy treatment for at least one month. The cardiologist deemed it to be an act of divine intervention that he is finally here and a miracle that he is alive. Mohaned’s mum also was shocked to hear how serious a problem it could be for him continuing as he has without medication. She says that it was difficult to get his medications in Gaza; this includes Aspirin, and blue inhalers.
It was a difficult day for his mum, which didn’t end there. She learnt at the pulmonary clinic, that he will need the physiotherapy possibly for his whole life, really compounding and driving home the message of the severity of his condition.
The doctors decided that he needs to have a catheterisation, and hope this can be arranged for this week or next, and therefore he must stay with us at our Shevet home in Jaffa, also so we can get him set up again with medications, inhalations and bring him for physiotherapy sessions.
By the end of the day, mum was tired and overwhelmed, as we made our way home to Jaffa. I feel for her so strongly, and I am so happy to be able to welcome her into our home. The mother of Leen, another family from Gaza, is also at our home and she cooked a beautiful dinner of maqlubeh (an Middle Eastern dish of chicken, vegetables and rice), followed by doughnuts and cake to celebrate her own daughter’s time in Israel, Mohaned’s arrival, and the end of quarantine for our new nurse volunteer, Carina. I think it was a sweet ending to a difficult day for this mum, and I hope that she feels like this can be her home for a time.
Please pray that she will feel loved and valued. Thank God for keeping Mohaned safe during these months back in Gaza despite his circumstances, and please continue to pray for his health. We are so happy to have him back!
Mohaned has been gaining weight in the hospital! When co-worker Julio and I visited him and his grandmother today, Julio said he looks ‘Xapa,’ which is an endearing way of saying “chubby” in Kurdish.
During our visit, Mohaned had some blood drawn. Then I held him for some time and he eventually fell asleep in my arms. We held him quite a bit when he was in Jaffa so it was very easy for him to settle because he’s known me and it felt totally natural to hold this lovely boy again.
Please keep him in prayer as he is stable in the hospital. The doctors have recommended a guardianship switch before he returns to Gaza, so please pray for expediency and favor with the border to grant the permission for Mohaned’s mother to come.
And please pray for wisdom for the road ahead; he will be a candidate for the Glenn procedure in three months time, God willing.
Mohaned has returned to the hospital only a week after his last discharge. We often say that this is Mohaned’s home, as this is the environment he has been immersed in since the age of 10 days.
Mohaned’s temperature rose slightly throughout the day. Something was not right, many of us could sense this as we see him every day…if not almost every hour. In the evening his temperature rose to a low fever and would not respond to fever medication. We took him to the hospital with the expectation that his condition would worsen soon, if it was consistent with his last fever episode. When he was in the emergency room, his fever temperature was high. His little body, despite his growth, cannot handle much stress.
After waiting multiple hours with Mohaned, he was finally admitted to the hospital for observation. Please continue to pray for Mohaned as the healthcare team investigates the cause of his fever.