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Monday, January 14, 2019

Save the Date... and start praying!

It was New Year's Day and we found ourselves dining in the quaint neighborhood of Ein Karem gazing at the sun drenched view of staggered green hills.

And a hospital.

Yes a hospital. How ironic that the hospital towered into our sights on the first day of the year. Just to help us set our agenda for the coming weeks. Just to loom over us like a dark shadow reminding us that, now that the holidays are behind us, it's time to get serious.

Serious about what, you may ask. How to say this? Kind of like, how you pick a date for surgery when the surgeon asks you for one? Is it like picking a coffee date: You want to meet up for coffee on Monday? Sure! Would you like to come for open heart surgery next Tuesday? Yes, why not?

Here's me drinking up the holiday flavors
(hot apple cider)

So that is what has become our fate and now that we've stealthily avoided the issue since that fateful appointment in November, it's time to start dealing with reality. And so all of a sudden when I can count on one hand the days I have left in school until D-Day, I better start getting ready.

It all began in November when I went for my routine heart check up that turned out to be not so routine. After a long and boring wait a technician spent way too much time boring me some more with her magic wand of the ultrasound. That was followed by another test of my patience and the iPhone's battery waiting for the cardiologist himself to review the results. Then he decided he too would wave the wand again over my fluttering and bored heart while we waited to hear that everything was A-okay and we could forget booking another appointment for a year.

Those were not the words we heard however. In fact, we heard words about booking appointment for other such things like, gulp. surgery.

See, when I was 8 months old and I underwent open heart surgery to basically build the walls of my heart (Complete AV Canal defect), the surgeon told mommy and daddy there was a 10 percent chance they'd have to revisit this scenario for some sort of repair. And now at 8 years old, that 10 percent equals 100 percent in the realm of Babies'/Murphy's Law.

Since that first surgery I've seen a cardiologist for follow up every six to 12 months (except for that time when my parents missed a year) just to make sure I was ticking well. Two and a half years ago there arose a cause for concern and that cause has increased since then. Dramatically since the March checkup.

If you want to get technical, the official diagnosis is aortic valve stenosis. And if you want to just be practical, it simply means that something (like scar tissue or a membrane) has been steadily increasing in size for the last few years and is now blocking the blood flow and driving up blood pressure to almost dangerous levels.

So we are doing a sort of repeat performance. Same hospital, same surgeon.

Save the date: January 22*

*The information in this blog is not meant to be used for diagnostic purposes since this was composed by a non-medical professional Nor should the dates be written in ink as surgery can be postponed in case a bigger emergency than mine arises!


  1. Daniel, my love. I wish you lots and lots of luck for that big day when the doctors will fix up your silly heart. Anyway will definitely see you at school before then for my special morning hugs xx

  2. Of course we'll be praying for you Daniel. When you go into the 'den' that Jesus will be watching over who and commanding his angels to guard you. xx

  3. No matter what date the surgery occurs, we're praying for you, Daniel! And your family, too. And the surgical team. Praying for all of you and that your heart will cooperate seemingly during the procedure. You are a brave, strong kid!

  4. Nicole, we will surely be praying for Daniel!! I won't forget the date because it's my birthday. I have a group of about 3000 moms who are prayer warriors, do you mind if I share the prayer request with them?

  5. Joining you in agreement for skillful correction and solution to a.v.s. and that Daniel's strong and braveheart always remain open to Jesus. Much love and blessings to you guys.

  6. Dearest Daniel,
    You are a hero and we all love you and are praying for you! Get it done and get well in no time!

  7. Iwill be praying for Daniel. He will get through this with flying colors. Brave boy

  8. Hi Daniel, We will be praying for a successful surgery and an easy recovery and much strength to your awesome Mommy, who loves and cares for you always.