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Cleft Exchange Day Five

“Super Ambitious Day” was Mission Accomplished! It was a day of challenges, learning and fun.

All five children scheduled received surgery today. All of the surgeries were difficult but went very smoothly. It was a very joyful but long day for everyone.

Yuan was the first case and her surgery was difficult but she returned back to the ward in great shape!

Next it was Gavin’s turn. His lungs were clear and he looked strong. Everyone held their breath to see if he would immediately return to wait another day, but as the minutes ticked, by they realized Gavin was getting his surgery! Prayers from around the world were being answered as the surgeons worked with great skill and teamwork to repair his facial cleft.

Stephanie encouraged his caregiver to get some sleep while she could, as it would be an uncomfortable night to follow as he might be restless and fussy. Everyone was so excited and anxious to see his new face but they had to wait over four hours for their first look. He returned, to everyone’s delight and joy, with a swollen but very handsome face. Thank you to all the people who have kept him their hearts, minds and prayers this week. We are so grateful.

Grace had waited patiently for her turn. She is such a brave girl and even has a little smile on her face as she is being wheeled down the hall. She is anxious to speak better and is happy to have surgery to help her. She has made friends with everyone one and is so sweet. She had surgery to create a flap at the back of her throat to improve her pronunciation of words. She returned in good spirits and slept the rest of the day away as she recovered.

Jian was the fourth case of the day. He held on to his foster mother until the last minute and as he was wheeled down the hall, he anxiously kept his eyes on her. She was there when he returned and he is recovering nicely.

Xi has kept everyone entertained. She was so busy playing that she forgot to be hungry. She also has great news to share with everyone- On this trip she learned to walk steady on her own. What a big step for her and how nice there are so many people to share in the joy of her accomplishment.

Xi’s cleft was quite wide but her repair looks wonderful. What a successful day of surgeries it has been.

Becca and Lianne have recovered from their surgeries quite rapidly. Stephanie had to bribe Becca with apple juice to get a hug and picture before Becca left for home with her foster mom. This bribe did not work with Faith Mei who would follow Stephanie everyone wanting to play but then would start to cry every time Stephanie pulled out her camera. Hao and Little Xi were also discharged home with their caregivers.

Tomorrow Ping, Lu and Jia will have their lips repaired and Dr Ness and Dr Martin will present lectures to the entire hospital staff.

The evening ended with a lovely dinner with the expats and their families. A long but so satisfying day.

A slideshow of additional photos from the day can be found here: http://snurl.com/fkso8

Tomorrow will be less ambitious but just as satisfying as the final surgeries are finished and the lives of the 22 children are changed.

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