Juliana 's Heart Surgery


New Shoes for Mom

Posted on Thu, 01/10/2008 - 00:00 by Brenda_Giangregorio

During the last visit to Azur this past Wednesday, we learned that two of the mothers (Juliana's mother and Mustafa's mother) needed new shoes. One pair had broken; the other was worn out. Stopping at Shuk HaCarmel in Tel Aviv today, we found some leather sandals to bless the moms.

They were delighted and said it was beautiful to have such a special gift. Usually, there is such a focus on the child that the mother forgets to tend to her own needs sometimes, resulting in being distracted during this time of medical crisis. The moms said they are not used to thinking about themselves or someone asking, "What do you need?" This small gesture spoke volumes of the compassion and attention of those serving and caring about their needs.

For several months now, women from a local church have volunteered to come along on visits to the families both at Wolfson Hospital and at the house where the families reside while waiting, both before and after surgery. Today was a special day for all. New toys donated to the church from an organization in the United States were taken by taxi to the moms and kids, along with new shoes and lots of hugs.

We are very happy to have taken part in making these Iraqi families' lives a little brighter. You can see the delight in their faces.

We thank everyone who has had their heart touched for this work, and responded by giving freely of their abundance.

Full of Life Again

Posted on Thu, 01/10/2008 - 00:00 by Donna_Petrel

Juliana is full of life again today with seemingly no after-effects of yesterday's catheterization. When I saw her in the ward, she was playing near her room with another child her age, both in their hospital pajamas, toddling around. Her mom was glad to see me, and especially to know they could leave the hospital. They are now here again with us in Jerusalem, much to the relief of Arya's mother, who felt lonely without any of the other moms and children around.

The main question on Juliana's mom's mind was wondering when Juliana's surgery would be. I asked Dr. Tamir this question, and he said that it would not happen as quickly as Baveel's. There are a number of other surgeries already scheduled and an emergency which will have to take a slot as well. But on Sunday it is expected that both Juliana and Arya and their mothers will go to the Save A Child's Heart house to wait there for their turns for surgery.

Please keep praying for Juliana, her mother, and their family at home. Sometimes the waiting seems the hardest part because of missing the rest of the family.

Cried Herself To Sleep After Cath

Posted on Wed, 01/09/2008 - 00:00 by Jane_Smelt

When I arrived at Wolfson today, I saw a bed being pushed along the corridor near the children's ward. I thought I recognised Juliana's mother, so ran to catch up. Juliana had just been catheterised and was returning from theatre. Quite a lot of screaming was coming from the bed, which upset her mum. By the time the bed was in the ward, Juliana was trying to kick out the catheter and wriggle out of the monitors. Eventually she settled down and went to sleep, exhausted from crying. Her mother is coping very well, but of course it is always distressing the first time you see your child with wires coming out of her arms and legs.

Catheterization Tomorrow

Posted on Tue, 01/08/2008 - 00:00 by Jane_Smelt

When the Wolfson Medical Centre called this morning, it was good news for Juliana and Baveel. It was now their turn to go for their catheterizations in the morning. Suddenly the mothers were in a frenzy of packing and cooking, as they wanted to take food for the other mothers at the hospital.

On arrival, the children's ward was a flurry of activity as two children, Aras and Dilshad were being discharged to the Save a Child's Heart house, and the new children were arriving, and other Iraqi mothers joined in for news of each other's children.

Juliana had her allocated whilst she was undergoing the first few medical proceedures which involved sticky cream on the hands. She was not very impressed by this, and was quite vocal in her protests.

A Determined Little Girl Awaits Her Surgery

Posted on Sun, 01/06/2008 - 00:00 by

On entering the Save a Child's Heart house this afternoon, it was amazingly quiet. Most of the children were taking their naps or resting in their rooms, but my family found little Juliana awake, sitting and playing with puzzles with her mom and Laura, the SACH house mother. Laura reports that the puzzles had just been gotten out and for the time being, were keeping Juliana content.

Laura went on to say that Juliana is a "determined" little girl and would not sleep in the afternoon, most likely due to just waking at 11:00 am. The night before Juliana didn't fall asleep until almost midnight - a real night owl!

Her willingness to play with the puzzles didn't last, as Hank tried to take some pictures of her. She started crying, making every effort to hide behind her mother and not be seen. A friendship though, was born when Hank offered Juliana his little stuffed donkey. This little toy makes an awful racket when squeezed; I think my family was very glad that she liked it and kept it!

It seems Juliana is in a holding pattern - the surgeon who is to perform the heart operation on her just left for the US last evening for a week's conference. So Juliana gets to uphold her image as the "wild child" at least for another week!

Juliana's First Echo

Posted on Tue, 01/01/2008 - 00:00 by Donna_Petrel

We set out this morning for the hospital for initial tests for each of our new patients. The results of these tests are used to determine if any of the patients need immediate hospitalization, and / or other treatment before surgery. Even though we were at the hospital for around eight hours, all the tests were still not completed for three of the patients, so we will return tomorrow.

Juliana was the most urgent of the cases which have just arriived, and Dr. Tamir wanted her to have an echocardiogram today. However, she was also the most fearful of the children, as most two-year-olds would be faced with all of the travel, the new faces, and the prodding, poking, machinery, and cameras in her face. She cried at almost any activity concerning her, which made for a very challenging day for her sweet mother. The nurses were very patient and gentle and encouraging, but Juliana was not comforted by anything except the freedom from medical attention! After a little while, it was decided to give her some drops which would help her sleep so she could have her echo done, and do the other tests afterwards. Even this took quite some time to help her, but once she was settled, Dr. Tamir began his work.

The results of her echo showed that she needs a catheterization in order to best determine her course of treatment. However, because there are changes being made to the "cath lab" equipment, there will be no catheterizations for at least one week. We're hopeful the work will be done so that her catheterization can be scheduled for next week. As she and her mother wait, please pray for them. She tearfully told me as we waited for Juliana's x-ray that she also has a four-month old son, Danny, who she misses very much.

The highlights of the day for Juliana were when she was able to play outside the echo room as she waited for the medicine to help her relax, and then this eveni
ng when we got the mobile phone equipped to call her father in Iraq. She is a happy little girl once she becomes comfortable around new friends, and of course, when she is talking to her Baba.

Thank you for remembering Juliana in prayer. The doctors will need wisdom to know which of her heart problems to treat first. Her mother will need patience for waiting through the process. And pray for her husband and baby boy back home as they too persevere through the time Juliana and her mother are here for this opportunity to receive the help they need.

Juliana and Friends Reach Israel as 2008 Dawns

Posted on Wed, 01/31/2007 - 00:00 by Donna_Petrel

After a very long day of riding and waiting, these dear children and their mothers arrived in Israel at about 8:30 this evening. I was able to meet them in the Jordan terminal and ride back into Israel with them to ease the crossing process. When we entered the Israeli terminal, a long passport control session was necessary for all 9 of us, and we happily exited into the main terminal about an hour later. We posed for a group picture before climbing into our waiting "chariot" to go to Jerusalem; you can see between Alex and I, from L to R, Hardi, Arya, Baveel, and Juliana, and their moms. Please pray for all of them to get a good night's rest. We will leave early in the morning for their first visit to the hospital for initial check-ups. Pray as well for each family as they enter this season of intensity in their lives while they have their hopes realized, even while their fears peak, when their respective children undergo surgery. We will entrust each one to God for His care to be evident throughout the process.