Eli came to us at the end of May, 2014. He was two months old, and he was tiny, weighing just 2.8 kg (6 lbs). His skin had the grey-blue tinge of severe heart disease, but he needed to grow bigger and stronger before he would be able to have surgery.
In October his situation took a dramatic turn. Eli had been battling a fever for a while, but one night he developed breathing difficulties and was crying inconsolably. Amy (the foster home manager) and his nanny rushed him to the hospital. His oxygen levels had dropped very low, showing readings of 22, and his nanny was very worried. They administered oxygen in the car and got his levels up to 40/50, which is still low but a lot better.
When they got to the hospital there were no beds available. Eli was very blue and he vomited. The hospital staff were seriously concerned and said his situation was very dangerous. They wanted Eli to be transferred to another hospital because they felt they were not able to help him.
When they reached the bigger hospital, Eli and his nanny had to stay in emergency room overnight. The doctors had wanted to put him on a breathing tube, but Amy questioned this, raising the concern that it would be hard to get him off it again. They called the head doctor and he agreed, so Eli was set up with an oxygen tent instead.
The next day he was able to be transferred to the heart hospital, the beginning of a long stay. He kept running a fever and getting diarrhea, so he was not a candidate for the surgery that he badly needed. Thankfully the hospital did not just discharge him and send him home to get well, and Eli was eventually able to have surgery on November 4.
The surgery took just under three hours and the doctors said that it went well. Eli remained in the ICU for 10 days before he was stable enough to move to the regular ward. How we rejoiced when we heard the news that, just two weeks after his surgery, Eli was being released from the hospital! Our tiny treasure has not had an easy start, but he has been safely held in strong hands and he’s survived. We are so glad to have Eli back with us, and we are full of hope for his future.