Surgery Delayed for 30 Days

Hedi was happily drinking a bottle when I arrived at the hospital today and found him and his sweet mother sitting in their room in the children's ward. We visited for a bit, and I gave Hedi an inflatable fish toy which had been sent in a ''goody box'' to us from some of you in the US -- thanks from Hedi!! He loved it. (It is a real blessing to us to receive the items you send for the children. Thank you!)
Yesterday while at the hospital with the student group, we found out that Hedi would be treated with steroid medication commonly given for asthma associated with allergies. Today, he was not wheezing when I was there, and did not cough much either. We thank God for his improvement!

When I spoke to the doctor yesterday, we also talked about Hedi's surgery. Dr. Katz informed me that Hedi would probably not have his surgery for about 30 days. This was a big disappointment for his mother, but we trust that the doctors know the best timing for each child's surgery to be scheduled. There are several cases which are more urgent than Hedi, and the surgeon will be out of town to train doctors in another country next week. He cannot perform some of the most complicated surgeries and leave town, because he must monitor these patients closely, so the surgeries must be scheduled accordingly. Hedi's is tenatively scheduled after some of the extreme cases, and this adds up to about one month. Had he not had the problem with the cough, maybe it could have been done more quickly.
Today, Hedi's mother was asking if I knew whether Hedi would be released this afternoon, so I went to check with the nurses. As I headed down the hall to the nurses' station, I saw one of the dear Israeli Iraqi families who come to the hospital to visit anytime they know another Iraqi child has come for treatment. It was good to see them, and they were looking forward to meeting the new patient and parent. I led them to the room and introduced them to one another, and they immediately began chatting happily because they have a friend in common -- Abu Sakar (father of Sakar). Sakar had surgery here in January of this year, and went home with a healthy heart. Her father escorted three families to the echocardiogram screening in Amman last month, and among them were Hedi and his parents who are friends because the men work together. I left them chatting, and at the nurses' station, found out from the nurse that Hedi would need to stay in the hospital today, but perhaps tomorrow he would be released to the Save A Child's Heart house. When I went back to tell Hedi's mother, her face lit up at the prospect of going to the house tomorrow to be with the other families she knows. It has been hard for her to be there alone with little Hedi. But after meeting these new friends, and having visits from our volunteers, she has become more settled in the hospital. Robin, who was with me in Amman, was planning to visit this evening too, which will be another joy for Hedi's mother, and Hedi too.
Please keep praying for Hedi and his mom. They will apparently be here for some weeks yet, and at this point, to her it seems a very difficult journey ahead. But soon Hedi will be well, and ready to return to his father and family at home with a repaired heart. I believe at that time Hedi's parents' smiles will be as frequent as their happy son's.

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