Thursday, June 30, 2011

They're Heading Home... Soonish

Today I got to accompany three of our Iraqi patients (Hezhan, Chera, and Joman) to the hospital for Echos.  We expected Hezhan and Chera them to be released, but knew it was not likely for Joman to be allowed to return home so soon after his surgery. However, as we played in the waiting area, his mother would look over me with a question in her eyes, "Iraq?" Translation: "Will we get to go home to Iraq tomorrow too?" But it was a question I couldn't answer.
The other two patients had their Echos and came out excited that they were officially released to go home. After each one emerged with a huge smile, I would do a victory dance around the waiting area. They LOVED this. Who knew me acting goofy and singing, "Iraq, Iraq. They're going to Iraq." could bring so much joy? Or maybe the fact that they were going home made them smile more than my dancing. Well, either way. They did join in though until they realized that other people were noticing our little dance party and quickly settled down. They were horrified to think people might think they were crazy. 
Finally, it was Joman's turn. The Echo only took about ten minutes, but it felt much longer as we waited, wondering if he would also be released. When I couldn't wait any longer, I headed over to the door into the Echo room. As I looked in, I made eye contact with Joman's mom. She peaked her head out the door, gave me a thumb's up, and whispered "Iraq!" Joman was also released! This was very unexpected considering he arrived less than a month ago, but the doctors believe his surgery and recovery have gone well enough that he can return home in record time.
With joy in our hearts, we knew it was time to celebrate while we waited for the official discharge papers. We headed down to McDonald's and ordered ice cream for everyone! Joman probably only ate half of his; the rest ended up all over his face!
Unfortunately, the official papers from the hospital were not able to be completed today. Wolfson discharged more children than normal and the nurse in charge of the paperwork was too overwhelmed to get them all done. The families were disappointed to hear they will not be heading home tomorrow, but understood that there was nothing else to be done. We hope to get the discharge papers on Sunday and send them all on their way Monday.

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