Johan's Procedure on
“I have been praying for a long time for my son to get his clubfoot treated. I am so proud of him. He is smart and a very good kid. He is also loving and fun to be with! He gives me strength.” Johan’s mom, Love, tells us all about him with pr… Read more
“I have been praying for a long time for my son to get his clubfoot treated. I am so proud of him. He is smart and a very good kid. He is also loving and fun to be with! He gives me strength.” Johan’s mom, Love, tells us all about him with proud tears in her eyes. Johan tells us with his bubbly personality, "Hi, I'm Johan! I'm in Kindergarten, and I like to write!"
Love is a full time mother to three boys while her husband Julius works as a carpenter to provide for his family. Her boys keep her on her toes, but they give her so much joy despite of the challenges that come with raising a child with arthrogryposis in his hands and feet. Love continues on and says, “We have relatives on both sides of the family who have clubfoot, which could be the reason why Johan has a disability. He also had a hernia and was able to have surgery last month. When his younger brother had an infection, Johan tagged along with me to get his brother checked. While waiting in line, Johan danced with the music and a nurse took a video of him and posted it online. That video was found by a member of the Rotary Club, who helped us get connected with Tebow CURE.”
That Rotary member was Megs, a very busy lady who works with several organizations to help people in her city, two plane rides away from Davao. She is thrilled to finally be able to serve her fellow countrymen through the hospital's services. "I first saw Tebow CURE Hospital on YouTube, and coming here was on my bucket list! I met [Executive Director] Mike at a Rotary event recently, then sent video and pictures of Johan to him and Dr. Jun."
Since Love and Johan live so far from Davao, they have a place to stay nearby, thanks to Seeds of Dignity, one of our local partners. The pair will be in town for a few months, and as of now, we're not sure how the family will celebrate Christmas this year. They may be apart, but for Johan's healing, the sacrifice is worth it. Please be praying for God's creative scheduling in this area!
Love grabbed this life changing opportunity for her son as an answered prayer for healing. Because of your continuous support to Tebow CURE, Johan started off with Ponseti casting on his journey until he was ready for surgery. We will begin by casting his feet, and doing physical therapy for his hands. For the next several weeks, we have the privilege to be Christ’s hands and feet to Johan as we get to know him and provide for his medical needs. Please pray for Johan!
We are glad to see Johan up today! His bandaged hands did not stop him from visiting the playroom and strolling all over the hospital. He is cleared for discharge today but before going home, our sweet Johan was visited by Doctor “who-hasn’t-been-named-yet”! He was delighted to receive toys and said thank you to Doctor “Tita Ganda” (Auntie Pretty). In case you noticed his casted feet on the photo, the casts were supposed to be his night splints but since he refused to have them removed, Doctor Shelley decided to have them removed next week at his follow-up.
Johan kept telling us to visit the “prayroom” (playroom) early this morning but he was scheduled to hang out at the OR with our visiting doctor from Shriner’s Hospital for Children, Doctor Maggie and Doctor Michelle. Because of Johan’s arthrogrypsosis, his fingers are bent and his thumb is contracted with the rest of the fingers. The doctors simultaneously worked on contracture releases on both of his thumbs to improve his grip and function. After two long hours of hard work, they successfully wrapped up and finished the surgery. Once he was reunited with Mom Love at the recovery room, Love asked him “Did you pray?” to which he sleepily replied with a nod. Johan and Love have proved time and again that prayers really do wonders and are grateful that people like you are rallying for them in prayers as well!
After half a year of being apart, we are finally reunited with Johan and Mom Love! Johan immediately gave us his tightest embrace and sweetest smile but did not wait another second before going straight to the playroom! His feet have healed really well but he is back here again to stay with us for a couple of days to meet our friends from Shriner’s Hospital for Children to correct his deformed hands. Even though this is already his second time to go into the OR, we ask that you lift up Johan and Love in your prayers that they will experience God’s healing power again as he goes down the OR tomorrow.
It’s a bittersweet day today! Johan has been a staple at all of our clinics for the last several months, and today, his final casts came off, which means he flies home tomorrow. We didn't get a "final" after, because standing on his own will take a bit, but we'll get one when we can. He made a card for Dr. Shelley which read, “Thank you Doc Shelly for the healing of my feet. And I’m a normal kid now. Thank you for the new life and new step of my life now. I love you so much Doc Shelly, Love Johan.” We’ll wait while you go grab a Kleenex. We will miss him so much! But, we are so proud to be a part of his healing journey, and while Dr. Shelley is the “face of healing” to Johan, he understands that there are so many who are behind him! Thank you for being part of his story!
Johan tagged along with the group from his guesthouse, and spent the day wandering the clinic floor of the hospital. “This is the best physical therapy he can get!” Dr. Shelley commented, watching him move non-stop. By about 3 pm, he was clearly exhausted, but refused to rest. We were relieved to see him emerge from the playroom with a little extra protection in case his body gave out! For the record, it didn’t, all that walking on his casts is making him super strong! A few more weeks, and he’ll be cast free!
Johan was first in line at physical therapy this morning so he could spend the rest of the day in the playroom! He walked faster so he could play with cars then he decided to draw those cars instead! He’s happy to share his masterpiece with you! Please continue to pray for Johan and specifically for his muscles to become stronger!
Johan has officially traded in his wheelchair for a walker, and he’s getting close to not even needing that! He made some huge strides in physical therapy today, walking on his own. He didn’t want anyone to help him, but we made sure and kept a hand close by just in case. For now he’s working on strength and balance, and once those casts are off and he’s wearing shoes that fit, he’ll do even better! https://youtu.be/Ap6AmVhltnE
Johan was walking today, he’s not wasting anytime! He also showed off his first pair of shoes, ever! They’re a bit on the large side, but this way he can wear them over his casts. He’s already planning to give them to his older brother when he goes home. After some discussion with the staff of Seeds of Dignity, our partner that provides housing for patients from far away, Love has decided that they will stay in Davao for six weeks. This way, they can do physical therapy here at CURE until Johan’s casts are removed. She worries that if they return home, Johan’s treatment will backslide, since there are no PT facilities available. This family has sacrificed so much; spending holidays apart, and now a little more time apart, but Johan keeps amazing us with his progress. It’ll be worth it in the end!
We were thrilled to see this smile back in the playroom today! Johan and Love flew back to Davao for one more cast change, and this time, Johan will start walking! Love confesses that she is glad to be almost finished. Even though they have had many costs covered, there are always travel “incidentals” that arise, and it has been a huge financial sacrifice for them. It was interesting to hear Love tell how they were received when they returned home last month. “Everyone thought that Johan’s feet were cut off. They kept touching his toes, because they didn’t understand!” We’re happy to tell that his feet are still attached, and we’re excited that Johan will soon be a testimony of God’s healing to his village! Please pray as they enter this “final stretch”, especially for God to provide all of the family’s needs.
"My feet are finally straight! I prayed that my feet will become straight before my birthday!" Johan told child mentor, Ella. We were a little surprised to hear that Johan was back in the operating room this morning. His pins were still giving him a lot of discomfort, so they were adjusted, and at last, we saw the Johan we know and love! What a relief for everyone! His birthday is this Sunday, so the staff gave him a few presents, and he wanted to make sure you all saw his new toy car. The biggest present though is that he’s going to be discharged today, and will fly home next week for a while after months away from friends and family. But, we’ll see him back for a cast change soon, and we’re looking forward to hearing about all of his adventures while he’s home! "Thank you, God! Thank you, God!" were Johan's words of praise before he went home.
Well, unfortunately no playroom today for our kiddo. He had another procedure this morning, which included pinning his feet into a stronger position to take some pressure off. By now, we all kind of claim Johan as our own, so it’s really hard to see him struggling! Love was by his side once again as he slept after surgery, we were at least glad to see him resting peacefully. Please join us in praying for a return of that sweet smile soon!
Ever faithful mom Love walked the halls with Johan, who is having another tough day. The nurses told us that they've given him all the pain relievers they can for now, and he's just decided to have a miserable day. Small distractions are helping curb the tears temporarily, but we're hoping tomorrow he can go upstairs to the playroom. That's his favorite spot in the hospital, and it might be just the ticket to turn his frown upside down!
The operating room staff met “grumpy Johan” this morning as they prepared him for surgery, but we reassured them all that his emotions swing from extreme to extreme, and even if he didn’t show it, he appreciated all they did for him! Dr. Shelley is all too familiar with Johan, and had the honor of “finishing” what was started months ago with his Ponseti casting. Nurse Jhun has been doing the majority of Johan’s castings, and came down to the operating room to also finish what he started, since by now, he’s very familiar with those feet! Johan, his family, and our staff have all worked so hard to get him to this point, we appreciate all the support he’s received from everyone here, and from all over the world!
Johan is all smiles today, because he has surgery tomorrow! He’s excited to take this huge step in his treatment! He spent the morning in the playroom, as always, and we’re sure he’ll be back up there again as soon as he can after surgery. Please keep him in your prayers as we’re entering the next phase of his treatment!
"Look at me! I can place my feet flat on the ground!" The excitement of seeing his feet looking so much better trumps Johan's grumpy experience during cast removal. This is his final ponseti cast, and he will finally have surgery when he comes back next week. He is another step closer to becoming fully healed! This past weekend, Johan had two other friends from the same island fly to Davao to start their own treatment. Good news spreads fast, and we're happy that Johan is already inspiring people through his healing!
Oh boy, was Johan was having a Monday! He was uncharacteristically grumpy, but even after a miserable casting, he politely thanked Nurse Edward, and even cracked a small smile. He still had his arms folded, just so we wouldn’t forget that he was mad at us. He’ll have surgery in two weeks, so he’s close! Thanks for being part of Johan’s team, even if he has some not so happy days!
We were happy to be reunited with sweet Johan today, but it doesn't look like we're the only ones who share the same sentiments. CUREkid Althea and her mom, Rean, were glad to see him, too! Both Althea and Johan were born with arthrogryposis and have been spending time together in the playroom as they wait for their weekly appointments. We're happy to know that Johan makes new friends during the process of healing!
“Yay! Army!” Johan couldn’t hide his excitement at getting cool fiberglass camouflage casts today, since he will go three weeks without a cast change. Johan and Love are staying in Davao over the holidays, even though they hoped to be home to be with their family. However, Love had concerns about the extended family trying to talk them into staying home and not continuing treatment. She has sacrificed so much to have her son treated so far, and we agreed that seeing him healed will be the best gift ever! Once he was done with his cast change, Johan politely told the casting crew, “Thank you Tito!” (which means “uncle”). Sweetest kid ever! Please pray for his family as they are apart this year, but we look forward to seeing them reunited soon!
Johan started a role call when he got to the hospital and said, “Hi!” to everyone that he knew. Even though he dislikes cast changes, he bounces back quick to his sweet and gentle voice and will start a conversation with anybody, including Nurse Edward, who became his best buddy last week. Casting continues for Johan. We ask that you continue to pray for him as we wrap and unwrap his feet with casts especially this Christmas season!
Johan was in for his cast change today, and in between, spent time gazing out the window at the big city below. “I see an airplane, trucks, an orange bulldozer, and…dinosaur eggs!” he told us with a giggle. We saw the first three, but we’re not sure about the last! Even though he’s really not keen on cast changes, he’s been able to maintain his sense of humor and fun attitude. Mom Love tells us she can really see the changes happening in his feet, so the castings are doing their job!
Johan convinced his caretakers and mom to bring him to clinic again today, even though his check up isn’t until next Monday! He just missed hanging out with us, and he picked the best day to come! Maddie, the daughter of our admissions clerk, had a birthday today and wanted to share with all of our clinic attendees. After she checked to make sure Johan was healthy, he was served fried chicken, his favorite food! We’ll see him next Monday for his actual check up.
The casting continues today, which Johan isn't so thrilled about. Love's soothing touch calms him down as he waits for his next set of casts. Johan still has a couple weeks to go, and we continue to pray for him as he gets better, and that hopefully he'll be braver as he takes on the next few castings. Thankfully, Johan continues to stay with Seeds of Dignity and actually made friends with fellow CUREkid Lovelyn, whom he calls "big sister." Not only that God provided for Johan's way of healing, He's also made sure that he's not going through it alone!
Johan’s second casting was today, and although he wasn’t too thrilled about that part of his visit, he had a blast in the playroom, this time learning how to play on the Playstation, thanks to Ella. He actually visited the hospital last Thursday with some of the other patients in their long term housing, even though he didn’t have an appointment. As they were getting ready to go, he cried, wanting to join them! We’re happy to know that the playroom has already become a place of comfort! We’ll see him back next week for sure, unless he tags along sooner!
After traveling almost all night, Johan was pretty energized when he made his first appearance at Tebow CURE this morning! He’s so outgoing and friendly, and only had a slight meltdown when it was time to cast him, but we found out that his biggest issue was being taken from the playroom! After his first casting was over, he returned to the playroom, and made Love, and anyone who passed by, a lovely meal of plastic food. We’ll be seeing him every week for a while, and we’re looking forward to seeing more of his fun personality!
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