The Children’s Hospital nestled beside the Main Hospital. A huge carpark serviced both sections of the complex.
Dr. Richard Hardy parked in his usual reserved place. With his medical bag clasped in his right hand and a cardboard box secured under his arm, he strode across the carpark.
He waited for the lift marked Children’s Hospital.
He reached the third floor, exited, and breathing regularly and peacefully strolled across the foyer and
entered ward CS1.
He smiled at the nursing staff who returned his greeting by their eyes above green sterile gowns and masks.
Richard shrugged into his own sterile garments before carefully spraying with disinfectant his medical bag and the box and contents from under his arm.
In the corner, near a window, a green screen enclosed a small bed upon which a young child lay. His small face contrasted dramatically with the pristine-white of the pillow.
Huge eyes of the darkest ebony looked up as Dr. Harvey entered.
Tubes extended from the child’s
small body and the jarring humm of a respirator pierced the silence.
‘Hello Josefa!’ Richard called. ‘As
promised, I’ve brought two friends. They are surgical team members and will watch your operation from the high shelf outside and overlooking the Operating Theatre.
They are not ‘white’ scary people, but magic teddy bears. Look, I'll show you.’
He opened the box which had been
placed on the tea-trolley. Carefully, he opened it and brought out two teddy bears. Richard didn’t seem to notice that both bears bowed and waved their paws in greeting. ‘Hi!’ said one. ‘Hello!’ rumbled
the voice of the one behind a green surgical mask.
Josefa’s eyes opened wider. He murmured weakly. ‘Hello, little bears.’
Richard continued. ‘I’ll introduce them now.
This is Donald the Doctor Bear’. Donald bowed again and
waved a paw. Josefa’s eyes watched intently.
‘This one is Sebastian the Surgeon.’ Sebastian winked,
and his brown eyes above the surgical mask glittered.
The five-year-old whispered something.
Richard bent down to hear clearly. ‘I’m not scared now. Please let the bears watch. I’ll look for them up high near the roof.’
silently coursed down his cheeks.
‘I’ll do that right now'
Richard affirmed. 'You keep watching.
I'll see you tomorrow, son’ he said.
With the bears still held in his hands he left the ward.
His chest felt tight and constricted. His heart pumped wildly.
Sick children had always been both his joy as a doctor and his reason for specialising in Paediatrics.
But, there would always be one that made a special impact.
The Josefa Sologar case was one because of its prominence.
A world-wide search had been put in place when the Fijian Health Authorities admitted all their options had been exhausted. They had a small child whose breathing was failing.
One lung collapsed completely after an infection and the other now was threatening also total failure.
The boy needs total lung transplant. Is there
possibility of this anywhere in the world?
A tragic road accident and the unexpected donation of vital organs from two young victims
meant that the large Australian hospital discovered, that from one mangled body they had a perfectly cross-matched, to the Fijian boy, pair of lungs.
a heart-rending, heart-breaking situation of tragedy and generosity, but urgent attempts were then made to get the child from across the sea into the theatre as soon as possible.
The helicopter landed and Josefa became a part of the all the lives in this place. His mother had to stay with a new baby in Fiji.
His father was setting up his waiting position in the special parent's room.
Dr. Hardy carried the two bears and placed them in the galley viewpoint overlooking
I know he has the best surgical team in the world and these lungs are a miracle provision - even at such tragic cost to another child- but I know,
I know, he needs another miracle. He’s only five and he is incredibly weak. Oh please, may it be granted.
Richard did not believe himself
to be a man of ‘faith’ yet his heart yearned that this child and his parents who were prayerfully trusting in God would get the answer they wanted. He said. ‘a-men’.
He walked downstairs to offer a few minutes of his time to the father waiting for news.
Josefa looked up and saw two tiny figures on the shelf.
Donald and Sebastian jumped and waved their paws wildly hoping he could see clearly.
A small smile flickered across
the child’s face as he drifted off to sleep under the anaesthetic.