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Remembering the peace of heart surgery 2 years later

Moving the chair to reach more.

Moving the chair to reach more.

Two years ago I spent four of the most peaceful hours of my life sitting in the surgical waiting area of Akron Children’s Hospital. To this day I am surprised each time I look back at just how at ease I felt during the time Rebekah was undergoing open heart surgery.

Still, two years later, I can feel that same peace even just thinking about it. I think that it was then, for the first time, after countless sleepless nights, packing and repacking our bags for surgery, and thousands of prayers begging God for a safe and seamless surgery, finally, I just gave up on worrying.

Two days after surgery.

Two days after surgery.


I knew that for those four hours, for just that moment of time, there was absolutely NOTHING I could do to change anything that was going on.

I could pray, and I did, but for the first time since the day she was born and whisked away from the hospital I was in on her first of two transports, I could not sit by her and fret, hold her tiny hand, or anything else.

I had to trust that God knew what He was doing, and her doctors and nurses did too.

March 6, 2014, as I sat eating a snack with Bekah, I looked at the clock. It was 10:00 AM. I realized that two years earlier I was sitting surrounded by friends and family, and more importantly, surrounded by the prayers of the many faithful who were at home spending part of their day simply sitting and praying for us.

As I tearfully told Bekah about the incredible peace I had felt two years ago, as her heart was stopped, patched, and restarted it occurred to me that I should feel that same way every day.

On the table with food coloring.

On the table with food coloring.


When Bekah says “1-2-3-weee” before she dives (that’s right, dives, as in headfirst) off of whatever she climbed onto, or better yet, jumps BACKWARDS from wherever she is, I often cringe, and yell, and think “If only Drs. Smith and Spector knew the energetic ball of lunacy they created when they patched that hole…”

And then I remember that they do know. They gave me the chance to witness all of this craziness that is supposed to happen when there is a two year old running amuck in the house.

And, while I will continue to worry about Bekah (especially when she is “up high” and asks if it’s ok to “go upside down”), and I will sometimes feel a little overwhelmed (like when Bekah is doing all of that, the phone is ringing, the mailman is at the door, and I’m trying to feed Sam), I am trying to take the time to slow everything down, enjoy every moment I have with her, and remember the peace that comes with knowing that there is ALWAYS Someone else in this jam with me…just like He was two years ago during those calm and quiet hours when Bekah’s heart was stopped.

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About Sarah Plant, Patient Family

Sarah Plant and her husband, Christopher, live in Mineral Ridge, Ohio, with their daughter, Bekah, and a rabbit named Gussie. She enjoys bike riding and spending time with friends, family and her fellow church members. Sarah is a stay-at-home mom and former high school English teacher. In her "Following Your Heart" blog, Sarah shares her experiences as a first-time mom whose baby was born with a congenital heart defect as well as a mom of a healthy boy.

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