“Close your eyes on the Shadowlands
I know you will open them again in the endless day
Of a love that dawns beyond the havens grey”—Andrew Peterson
For forty-one days after his heart surgery, Akar fought to hang on to life while bit by bit, his body deteriorated and his strength waned. Finally, the strain became too much for his fragile heart, and early Thursday morning, with his beautiful mother beside him, Akar died.
Perhaps there are no words sufficient to honor a child’s life, but where words fail, tender acts of love speak volumes. For the last forty-one days, Akar’s mum has barely left his side. She has spoken to him, prayed over him, stroked his hair, held his tiny hands in her own, and at every moment, given everything of herself to care for her little boy with quiet strength and tender love.
It has been a privilege and an honor to know Akar and his mother. His life, though brief, was and is precious to the God who has loved him from ages past and who holds him safe in His arms even now. While we grieve with Akar’s family here in the shadowlands, we look forward to the day when his beautiful brown eyes will open again in the light of eternity.
Please continue to pray for Akar and his lovely mother. Today the doctors at Sheba Hospital said there is a negative development in that Akar has developed pneumonia. In all of this, Akar’s mother seems to be really peaceful and calm on the outside; I don’t know how she is on the inside and I can’t imagine how much she is suffering during this whole time. God is with her however.
Let’s pray for peace and trust.
Sheba Hospital doctors took another MRI scan of Akar yesterday, which showed there is some damage in his brain. Today, Akar had a diagnostic bronchoscopy because there is blood in his airways and they are looking for its source.
There is no bleeding coming from his lungs, but they saw that his lungs have some damage as well, and they could not find the source of his bleeding.
Please keep praying for this precious life and for strength for his mother. We’ll keep updating you.
When I went to Sheba hospital today to visit Akar and his lovely mother, the doctor wanted me to tell her that after they have taken down some of his medications in the days after they had to resuscitate him, he is doing a bit better. Akar is in the same condition now that he was in before the night of his needed resuscitation, which is good.
When I went into their room today, Akar’s eyes were open. Another thing the friendly doctor wanted me to tell her, is that today was the first time that Akar responded to her shining a lamp into his eyes, by closing them. It seems to be a good sign, but he is still not aware of what is going on around him. He is still intubated.
The hospital performed another MRI scan for him today, as the ones they did before he needed to be resuscitated are not accurate anymore. Akar’s mother is a very smart woman and even though the situation is definitely not easy, she understands what is going on and is asking questions to understand everything. She is aware of what is going on around her. She asked me today if there is still hope for her beloved son and from a human perspective, it might seem hopeless, but for God nothing is impossible and we can have hope in him.
Please join me in prayer that Akar’s mother can have hope in God as well and can trust in him, that he knows what is the best plan for the life of her beloved son.
In Sheba Medical Center’s Pediatric ICU, Akar is still stable and his heart condition unchanged. I’m so glad that it’s not worse. The doctors lessened the medications to see if he wakes up and how he reacts.
His amazing mother has such a big staying power. But she is very worried about her son and is excited to talk with the doctors about Akar’s condition soon.
Please keep on praying for Akar and for strength for his mother.
This morning we got a call from the ICU at Sheba and they told us, that Akar had to be resuscitated in the night. So I went to the hospital today to talk to Akar’s lovely mother and the doctors to know why they had to resuscitate him and how he is doing now. The doctor said that there was a lot of fluid around his lungs and due to that his oxygen levels dropped low. It was respiratory failure. Thank God that they were able to resuscitate Akar. He is reintubated now and back on a lot of medical support again.
After the night, Akar was connected to a ventilator that is taking over a lot of work for the lungs, but today the doctors already saw that his lungs are working a bit, so they changed the Ventilator to one that is doing less work for the lungs. Akar is stable now. During the hours that I’ve spent today with his lovely mother, she cried a bit and prayed a lot. I’m really impressed by this amazing woman because I explained to her how Akar is doing and she understood and told me again. She is such a smart woman, which is really nice and rare. Most of the time that I’ve spent with the mother today we didn’t speak much together and there was a short moment where I thought “it’s not necessary for me to be here at the moment, cause we are not talking” but then I remembered that if it would be me or my sister in this situation I would want someone to be with me and in these moments, we are like their sisters and family. It helped me a lot and I hope these are the moments, where they see Jesus trough us and I’m sure that she will remember this.
The hospital staff wants to do an MRI scan for Akar in the coming days to see how this affected his heart, but they still want to wait a bit until he is stable enough. The mother understands that really well and knows that the hospital is taking the best medical care of her beloved son. She keeps praying and trusting in God and specifically asked me today, to pray and ask for prayer. Please continue to pray for the precious life of little Akar and his lovely mother.
Doing better; still critical
Over the weekend at Sheba Medical Center’s Pediatric ICU, Akar’s support was able to be lowered little by little.
Today, he is doing better than before although still in very critical condition. The doctor wanted Akar’s mother to understand that Akar could continue getting better and this is what they hope and pray for, but also the possibility of death still looms.
Please be praying for Akar in the midst of this situation.
Akar had his catheterization at Sheba Hospital today, which was supposed to be an interventional catheterization to dilate his pulmonary arteries. During the waiting time, I was sitting together with Akar’s mother. She was really calm and we talked just a bit during the cath, because she was praying most of the time.
The whole catheterization took around five and a half hours. After that, the friendly doctor came outside and explained everything patiently to the mother with the help of a person on the phone who could translate. The doctor explained that during the cath, Akar had a reaction to the contact agent. Therefore doctors were not able to see everything well enough, so the cath was more diagnostic and not interventional.
Akar’s mother understood everything well and was calm, receiving this information even though it’s not what she would have hoped for or what she expected. After the cath, Akar was brought back into the ICU. He is on the same amount of medicine that he was on before the cath, which is good. Akar is still alive and God knows why things didn’t turn out today the way we might have hoped for. But He knows best.
Please let us continue to pray that Akar’s mother knows this and can keep trusting in God and that Akar might live, if it is God’s will.
Another day of slight improvement
Akar’s mother diligently asks how her boy is doing, and thank God, today was another day of slight improvement. His cardiac support was lowered a little bit and the sepsis is responding to the antibiotics.
Since he has been getting better slightly for the past two days, his mother has wanted nothing but to stay by her side and take of of him. Please continue to pray for Akar’s life at this critical time.
After Akar’s mother got some rest in our community home in Jaffa, we took her back to Sheba hospital today.
Akar is surprisingly improving slightly, although he is still in a critical condition. The doctors still don’t know why his heart got worse recently and isn’t working properly.
Also the doctors don’t know yet what kind of sepsis he has, but they are treating him with antibiotics.
Please pray for strength for Akar’s mom, who is not well either and for Akar still.
After the doctors decreased some of the medical support yesterday for Akar, they had to increase it again because his blood pressure was dropping. The doctor today said that Akar is now on the highest amount of medical support. He said that if Akar is deteriorating now, they can’t give him more support. They are not considering to put him on the ECMO machine. Please keep praying for him and for the mother. She understands the situation and is very calm.
The Lord sits enthroned over the flood; the Lord sits enthroned as king forever. May the Lord give strength to his people! May the Lord bless his people with peace!
Less support, still stable
There was no evidence of bleeding in Akar’s CT scan at Sheba Hospital yesterday, thank God. It was good for Akar’s mother to know this for sure. Along with this and the improvement of his liver and kidneys, today he is on a little less cardiac support and has been doing well. Please be praying that this continues.
He will probably undergo an MRI of his heart and now the doctors are thinking to include his brain, to see if there is something that wasn’t in the CT scan.
Occupational therapists came today and made a bracelet for his ankles to protect his range of motion for the future, when, God willing, Akar becomes better and able to walk and run and play.
Searching for cause of paralysis
The neurologist came to check Akar today; Although the left side of his body is weak, he is capable of movement there, but the right side of his body seems to be paralyzed. Now the doctors are looking for a reason as to why this has occurred. The neurologist and one of the head physicians of the ICU ordered a brain CT scan. In a preliminary reading of the scan, it was still not clear what the cause of the paralysis was.
Meanwhile Akar’s kidneys and liver are performing better, thank God, while his heart function remains low. No one knows what the outcome will be for Akar, but may God intervene in these circumstances for the preservation of Akar’s life and also that he would regain the ability to move the right side of his body.
Akar’s situation after the surgery has not improved. His oxygen levels went down this weekend and he is also running a fever. Probably there is a problem with the heart. They will run tests the next days to see where the blood is flowing. If they can find where the problem is, they will discuss what to do next for Akar.
The mother is calm under the situation, but of course worried for her son. Akar is her youngest child and only son after three beautiful girls.
The surgery in Sheba hospital today for Akar took nine hours. Akar’s doctor explained to us that they had to find many arteries to reconnect them, which is very complicated, although the surgery went very well. Also a second surgery is probably needed, but it would have been a high risk to do it all at once.
Akar’s Mom was extremely calm and patient and waited all day along with another mother, whom she knows from being in quarantine.
It is a special situation, because it’s the second time of Akar‘s mom being in Israel for her child’s surgery. She was here a few years ago before with her older daughter whose surgery was again sponsored by Shevet Achim, so she knows already how it works here.
At the end of the waiting, Akar’s mother was more nervous and worried because it took so long and the doctors told her that it usually takes only (around) six hours. Also, no doctor gave us an update during the surgery. A co-worker told us this is a good sign, because it means the child is not in danger, which helped us not to worry.
After the surgery was done, we still had to wait a long time before Akar’s mother could enter his room. Let’s thank the Lord for the good surgery and please pray for a good recovery for little Akar.
Today Akar and his mother arrived to Ben Gurion Airport all the way from Kurdistan. We collected them, another family and a former volunteer nurse, Jen, in the morning. Everyone was a bit tired from the flight, but everyone seems happy to be in Israel at the same time.
Akar’s oxygen level was very good during the flight. Akar had a previous surgery in India, so his heart should be ready now for the full repair surgery.
Let’s pray for a good procedure and settling in time.