After our enjoyable first meeting earlier in the week, Ghada’s mum and I recognised each other in another part of Sheba Hospital today. She told me that the doctor has said that Ghada’s glucose level is now within a normal range, and therefore she is quite likely to be returning home perhaps tomorrow or the day after! So of course, co-worker Sebastian and I needed to visit them both in case this is one of the last opportunities to say our goodbyes.
Despite being in the hospital for such a long time, Ghada’s mum was in a good mood, and welcomed me warmly to the hospital room to meet her beloved daughter. She explained they are still here because Ghada’s glucose levels are not good.
From these months in the hospital, Ghada has acquired a lot of beautiful pink and sparkly clothing, and her mother has acquired a bit of Hebrew. We laughed together as how miserable both of us are at knowing much Hebrew at all!
Thank God that despite the long stay, he is upholding this mother and blessing her with patience and love with her baby.
Ghada is fed through a tube. Today, there was an increase in the milliliters of food she is receiving by 5 ml in the hope that Ghada will grow and gain weight.
Unfortunately, the doctors still haven’t found out why her blood sugar level is so low and have to do more tests. Let us continue to pray for little Ghada, that the doctors will be led by God and find out what the low blood sugar is and for continued strength for the parents.
She still has a few more tests to undergo, as the doctors are investigating why her blood sugar is so low. Please pray for peace, joy, and rest for Ghada’s family as they continue to care for their little Ghada.
Ghada was receiving physiotherapy when I visited her today at Sheba Medical Center. Last week she had her second eye surgery, so this was the first time since both operations that I’ve seen this beautiful girl.
It was late morning and the physio was just ending. Prior to the therapy, she had a small blood test and prior to that, an echo. She was eager to sleep after a hectic morning.
Like so many time I’ve seen before, her mother wrapped her up and cradled her until she fell asleep. She and I sat together and I admired her crib filled with stuffed animals. The love and creativity of her mom shines through in each detail of their lives, not least in how each month she celebrates Ghada with pictures. She turned three months and her mom sent me the photos, which absolutely captivate your heart.
Please continue to pray for this precious family, and for Ghada as she receives treatment; she is not yet well enough for discharge, so we ask God to bring growth and strength to her body.
Just, as we wanted to visit the wonderful little girl, she was prepared for her second eye-surgery. We spent some time with both parents, as the father was with his wife. They showed us pictures of Ghada after her first eye-surgery and they hope for a good outcome.
Please pray for Ghada and her parents, that their hope is not in vain, and that the outcome of all will be marvelous.
Our visit today was short, as Ghada was in demand! The occupational therapist was at the bedside measuring and fastening some hand and wrist splints, and the physiotherapist was waiting her turn!
Ghana’s parents were both present and attentive as usual. It’s so nice to see a baby so well loved and both parents focusing so much attention on their daughter!
Keep praying for Ghada and her parents as they walk this challenging road.
Co-worker Erika and I arrived at Sheba Medical Center in the morning to visit little Ghada. When we arrived, the nurse said she is now in the Intensive Care Unit because they could not find her veins. In Intensive Care, the nurse told us that they tried to insert a Hickman (central vein line) twice without success and they will try again in a few days. We were also told that tomorrow, or when she has less water in her lungs, they will try extubation.
Ghada’s mother was very nice. She said that today is Ghada’s (monthly) birthday! Ghada is their only daughter. While we were there, we saw the dedicated care of her nurses and doctors.
Erica shared with me while we stood outside, that she had the feeling Ghada’s mother was very tired, but at the same time, had hope that it will be good with her daughter. She also saw that Ghada’s mother truly appreciated our visit and is thankful for the hospital team’s work and care for her little child
We bought them a cake before we left for the birthday. Please pray for a full recovery for the little Ghada.
Ghada has become a favorite to visit at Sheba hospital. Her young mom always greets us warmly, and today was no exception! She smiled a big smile when I told her that co-worker Alena sent her greetings; mom and Alena share a special bond.
We found out that Ghada will be scheduled to have a feeding tube placed in her stomach on September 8th. She is also waiting for a brain MRI to help determine her neurological status, and she may be scheduled for eye surgery in the next few weeks, due to her congenital glaucoma.
Please pray for little Ghada and her young parents, that they will know peace and have wisdom as they navigate this complex medical journey with their firstborn daughter.
Ghada had her eyes nearly closed, it was so peaceful around her. The nurse came, did some checks and the results were in the frame. Ghada’s mother was very encouraged by our visit and I was impressed with how Alena spoke with her in Arabic.
The care and warm atmosphere in the hospital filled my heart with joy. The possibility to be in touch with the families in this way is a great blessing. Even though I couldn’t speak Arabic, it was a blessing just being present there.
This is certainly true of little Ghada, she is a fighter. I wrote last week that Ghada is so clearly the delight of her parents, so to witness the dejection and sadness of her mother today was hard to stand by and watch.
Colin and I took some time to pray together with a few of the moms for all the Gaza kids at Sheba, but it was the helplessness I felt seeing the anxiety and anguish of Ghada’s mom that spurred me to suggest prayer. It is the only thing we can do and in that moment I knew we had to pray. I said that I often don’t understand exactly how petitionary prayer works. But I know it’s more than just psychologically off-loading burdens to a vaguely benevolent God. We pray to the God we know as revealed in Jesus, and somehow it matters in the eternal scheme.
So we bring Ghada before our Father in heaven, whose name is holy and whose nature beyond human comprehension. His ways are not our ways and we trust Him unreservedly with Ghada’s life:
Lord, in humility, because of our limited human frame and knowledge, we ask that you would bring about her body’s ability to fight the infection, that her body will respond to any antibiotics the doctors use to treat her, that you protect her life, because she is so little and meek; the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as her.
Praise God for her recovery process. Please continue to pray for Ghada as she still needs to learn how to drink milk independently and will be in the hospital until she can safely eat, or until she is transferred to another hospital for possible eye surgery.
She was extubated this week also, and her parents have been able to hold her again. Her mom showed me a video of herself and her husband happily holding their girl.
Today was actually the first time I saw Ghada face to face. She will need a visit from a speech pathologist to investigate her present inability to eat. She has been eating via a nasal tube all her little life.
She will also need surgery for glaucoma in the near future. Please keep this dear one and her hurdles in your prayers.
Today we received the news that Ghada is finally off of oxygen support.
Praise God they were able to completely wean her off of this support. I hope her parents are enjoying spending time with their precious daughter, and are able to hold her. Praise God for steps towards improvement.
We pray a blessing over her family:
And keep you
Make His face shine upon you
And be gracious to you
The Lord turn His
Face toward you
And give you peace
It’s rare that two parents are in attendance for the surgery, but there was a steady, silent reassurance between them as they waited, which was beautiful to witness.
The surgery lasted four hours before Ghada was out, and now she is in recovery! Nicolle and I saw her mum again before we left, and she looked very happy to be breaking her fast (due to a Muslim holiday) with the other mums in the hospital! They have a really wonderful, inclusive, and supportive community between themselves.
Thank God for this good day, Ghada was the first of three surgeries, and really, we praise the name of Jesus for the positive outcome for Ghada.
She has a diagnosis of Coarctation of the Aorta. As I was not allowed into the Intensive Care Unit, it took me some time to find them, but eventually I met both of Ghada’s parents. They are a young couple, the mother is Palestinian and the father has Israeli citizenship. He speaks Hebrew and so I tried practicing my basic Hebrew to speak with him.
Ten-day-old Ghada is a beautiful baby girl who was transferred to the Sheba Medical Center from a hospital in East Jerusalem last night via ICU ambulance as she is on mechanical ventilation. Her father is a resident of Jerusalem and her mother from the West Bank.
Tomorrow Ghada is scheduled to go in for emergency surgery to correct her coarctation of the aorta.
She is here with her dad, so please pray for them both, and also for her mum, who so recently gave birth but is away from her baby for this important time.
We’ve been asked to help newborn Ghada make it into an advanced medical center in Israel, after a hospital in East Jerusalem found they could not carry out the emergency surgery she needs to correct a severe narrowing of her aorta. Ghada will also need surgery to correct congenital glaucoma, as well as a malformation of the thumb of her right hand.