One of my precious boys, Naftal, who is eight, is in the hospital as I write this, his tenth day. Two weeks ago he began complaining of symptoms that sounded like malaria but then his stomach just got bigger and bigger and he was obviously jaundiced as well. We took him to the hospital last Saturday thinking he likely had a liver infection.
But this Tuesday he was finally diagnosed with Wilm's Tumor, a childhood cancer of the kidney. In the US, the prognosis is quite good but I've no idea what it will be here in Mozambique.
Naftal will have surgery on Monday to remove the tumor after which he will begin chemotherapy at some point. To quote my friend Erin, one of our nurses, "This is a huge thing for any child to go through in the Western world where we have amazing technology, good monitoring, wonderful doctors, nurses, and support staff, and cutting edge medicines. Little Naftal is in a very infectious environment with medicine from 50 years ago, staff who are less than brilliant to look after him (most is done by the tia staying with him that is not related to him and is not in anyway medical), and little to NO monitoring with labs or machines or vital signs, and to top it off a heart valve problem which will complicate his surgery and anesthesia during."
In the natural, we have much to fear on behalf of Naftal. But we are trying to keep our hearts and minds set on the promises of God and not the natural!
Please join with us in praying for Naftal, for complete healing and protection of his body and life. Please pray also for his father who has been so present during this time, visiting every day and calling my Tias morning and night to get an update and pray over the phone with him. He even asked if he could stay the night with Naftal but was told he couldn't, only women are allowed to stay the night with the children (one clue as to the state of medical environment here).
Please pray for God's peace and presence to be a great comfort to Naftal who is in physical pain and doesn't understand what is happening to him. We love our little Naftal and want him home with us, safe and healthy and loving life as he normally does!
(You can see in this photo, he's been a room for ten days with no machines and no monitoring. It's pretty scary.)