Shahad's Heart Surgery

Kurdistan, northern Iraq

Still needs $5500
Help Shahad

Time to Go!

Posted on Sun, 11/18/2018 - 22:46 by Jennifer Kellner
Just as the Shabbat came to a close last night, Shahad was discharged from the hospital. Her and her father were very eager to get home, understandably. Unlike many of the babies we see here, Shahad is already seven years old and her emotions are very evident. She is having to endure some physical pain following heart surgery and emotional pain from being separated from her home, both of which are difficult for her. Yet her and her father are incredibly sweet and loving. This is completely evident even without us sharing the same language. 
While in the hospital, Shahad and her father patiently waited while we visited Mir. During our time in Mir's room, Shahad's father came by and gave us a small toy. "It's from Shahad," he said in Kurdish to mother of Mir. "She says it's for Mir in case he wakes up, so he can play with it." Mir is under heavy sedation at the moment and his body struggles to heal and recover. This was so sweet of Shahad, it really melted our hearts. 
Please pray with us that Shahad would open up to the group, as she is quite shy, so she can enjoy her time here. We pray that God would fill her heart with joy and health. She is a precious daughter of the Lord and we are so thankful she is now at the apartments with us!

Doing Well

Posted on Wed, 11/14/2018 - 10:01 by Coby van Wijhe
This morning when I visited Shahad and her father, the doctor was just reading the pacemaker that they put in yesterday. It all looked fine, and Julio was able to translate to Dad all the details and that was very helpful.
Shahad is already in secondary ICU which is a good sign. We are thankful that it went well and that she can have a healthy and happy life now.


Posted on Tue, 11/13/2018 - 13:38 by Magdalena Ott

When I arrived at the hospital today to see how Shahad is doing, she was watching some videos and clips on Youtube. After some time we started playing a game with her, kind of a puzzle, and she really liked it and it distracted her a little bit from the fact that she would go in soon for her pacemaker surgery. Unfortunately she wasn’t allowed to eat before the surgery so it was difficult to wait. Finally she went into surgery! The surgery went well and she is already extubated. The doctors said that she will be able to eat something soon. Praise God for all that he has done so far!

Praying for Nothing Permanent!

Posted on Tue, 11/06/2018 - 22:24 by Luzma Velasquez

Today we visited Shahad at the hospital to see how she is recovering from the surgery and to learn about further plans from the doctors.

I found her awake and playing with the telephone; she’s been coloring and listening to music and videos! She is very happy although her chest is painful. The doctor said she is recovering very well and that they wanted to wait for a week and see if maybe her heart will work properly and she wouldn’t need a permanent pacemaker. Right now she is on an external one. Join us in prayer so that Shahad will not need a permanent pacemaker!

The mothers at the base sent her the food she likes: tomatoes, rice and chicken. She was so happy to eat it and I enjoyed so much watching her eating! She is just adorable and we pray and hope we will have her back at the base very soon!


Posted on Wed, 10/31/2018 - 20:41 by Diana Zarrate
Today we went to visit Shahad and were very excited to see her. Before entering the room we saw her father who warmly greeted us telling us that his daughter is doing better. When we saw Shahad she was asleep.
She was extubated yesterday. Glory to God! We asked a doctor about her progress, he said that she was doing well, that she maybe will not need a pacemaker in the future, but for now, she needs to recover and then the doctors will make the best decision for her. 
Please continue to pray for full recovery for Shahad and for peace and strength for her father.

Shahad's Big Day

Posted on Mon, 10/29/2018 - 16:41 by Julius Barguil

It was a long day for Shahad's dad. Yesterday she was admitted to Sheba hospital and today was the big surgery for a very complicated heart defect. He was little anxious and nervous all day. During one intimate conversation with his daughter, he explained to her what was going to happen, and that the doctors were going to heal a problem in her heart; then he broke into tears. I spent the whole time with him while Shahad was in surgery, and he didn't want to leave the waiting area even for a walk or a coffee. I was praying for God's comfort for him as well as wisdom for the cardiologists to do a great operation; but even more for sweet Shahad.

We had great conversations and the company of Mohammed's uncle, who is also at the hospital. It was good to see Shahad's dad smiling sometimes. 1when the surgery was finished, we were able to see Shadad in the cardiac intensive care unit. She is intubated and resting while we wait for her lovely heart to get good electric connections and grow stronger. Doctors will observe her for the next 48 hours so please keep her in your prayers. Thank you again and blessings to all.

Admitted for Surgery

Posted on Sun, 10/28/2018 - 22:01 by Coby van Wijhe
"The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; he knows those who take refuge in him." Nahum 1:7
Luzma and I brought Shahad to the hospital in the afternoon. Dad was happy that she will have her operation tomorrow. They have been waiting for seven years for this moment. In Kurdistan they did pulmonary banding but were not able to do more for Shahad's heart problem, and she still has a big hole between the ventricles. The doctor sat down with us and explained how the operation will be done.
Shahad is a very quiet, sweet girl. She doesn't talk much and is a bit shy. But once she gets to know you, she opens up more and we see a beautiful flower. We had to wait some time before there was a bed available, so she spent time drawing numbers and letters.
Dad looks very well after her. He stays at her side and will be her stronghold for the coming days. Let's pray that our Lord will be their stronghold.

The Lord Delivers

Posted on Thu, 10/25/2018 - 15:39 by Deborah Burke

"Blessed are those who have regard for the weak; the Lord delivers them in times of trouble." Psalm 41:1

This passage was one that was given to our community this week not only in reference to the work of Shevet Achim but also to the bigger picture of our friends in Sheba hospital who tirelessly work in partnership to restore hope and life to the weak children brought to us.
Our sweet and shy Shahad was scheduled for a pre-surgery catheterization at 12noon today to check whether imminent surgery was viable. Apparently there were some concerns about Shahad's lung function. 
The hospital team arrived at 9am to find Shahad asleep. She remained so almost until it was time to be wheeled away. It is interesting to observe the various responses of the guardians. Many fast while their loved ones are in surgery or having a procedure. Shahad's father restlessly paced up and down the corridor but did sit with co-worker Robyn to have some chai.
The catheter team alerted him with big smiles just before Shahad was wheeled out. Good news. The cardiac surgery team will review Shahad's clinical picture and it is hoped that surgery will be scheduled for next week. Please pray that this will be so. Amen.

Admitted for a Cath

Posted on Wed, 10/24/2018 - 23:33 by Magdalena Ott

Today the hospital finally gave permission to bring Shahad to the hospital for a diagnostic catheterization. Since Shahad is eight years old, she could recognize already what’s going on around her and was quite excited to go to the hospital. At the beginning she was still a little bit shy and unsure, but then she started trusting and playing with me and talked to me in Kurdish.

For the admission she had an x-ray and they took blood from her. It took some time for them to get her room ready, but finally she got her bed. Tomorrow she will get her catheterization. Please pray that the catheterization will proceed well, that there is a smooth recovery and that the doctors can determine the best plan for her ahead.

Welcome, Shahad!

Posted on Sun, 10/14/2018 - 21:32 by Julius Barguil

Today we welcomed two new families from Kurdistan. Their flight was a little bit earlier than expected so both families were very tired. One of the new children is a beautiful eight year-old girl named Shahad.

She had her first heart operation in Iraq when she was 3 months old. Afterwards, she needed a second surgery, but was not able to get one.

Today we went right away from the airport to Sheba hospital for the initial screening and echos from the medical staff.

Then we came home for lunch and a beautiful bed was ready for her and her father. Now they are resting and waiting for the Israeli doctors to decide what is the next step. Thank you all for your prayers and love.