Facebook reminded me this morning that two years ago today grandson Ben, who was 4 years old at the time, had his first endovascular surgery to repair an AV fistula (abnormal vascular formation) in his brain. Here’s my Facebook post from May 19, 2014:

Grandson Ben came through today’s surgery just fine. There were 10 or more people on the medical team. Dr. Berenstein placed 18 coils (made of platinum and each about the width of a human hair, I read online) in the fistula in Ben’s brain to slow the abnormal blood flow. Ben is in pediatric intensive care and will have a second procedure done later this week (using medical-grade super glue) to stop the abnormal blood flow. It sounds like science fiction! We are very grateful for everyone’s prayers and for the world’s finest medical team. Please continue to pray for Ben as he goes through this second procedure.

A year ago when Ben returned to New York for an annual check-up, we were dismayed to learn that the repaired fistula had reopened.  My daughters’s post from June, 4, 2015:

Please keep those prayers coming. We just spoke with Dr B and the fistula has reopened. They are going into surgery now to repair it. It is life threatening.

Ben also came through that surgery just fine, and I am delighted to report that he is completing kindergarten, continues to excel in sports and just recently celebrated his 6th birthday.

After enjoying soccer last Fall, he is playing again this Spring in an indoor soccer program:



And he graduated from the T-Ball program last year to an actual baseball team in which he alternates between playing the position of catcher and playing in the outfield:


Ben celebrated his sixth birthday two weeks ago with an outdoor party and had great fun with his friends, family, and neighbors:


In two weeks Ben and his parents will make another trip to New York for his annual checkup with Dr. B. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.  We hope beyond hope that Dr. B. will find no problems and that Ben will not have to undergo another endovascular surgery.

Soli Deo Gloria !    #BenStrong

3 thoughts on “Two years out, Ben plays soccer and baseball and celebrates his sixth birthday

  1. I had to keep blinking to clear the tears from my eyes as I read this. Tears for what I know your your family – and Ben – were going through as the doctors worked to fix what wasn’t right…..and the more I read the tears were for praising God for the saving of Ben’s life. Then as I read on, the tears were joyful dancing tears as I felt the excitement in Ben’s life now…..I have written ‘Ben and All His Family and Doctors’ on a prayer card…..and I will be praying for all of you.


    1. Thank you so much. Ben’s first surgery was a little over a month after my mother (Ben’s great-grandmother) passed away from cancer. So while we were still mourning her death, we were fearfully awaiting the outcome of our little guy’s surgeries. Then a year later, we feared for his life again… Yesterday, he was honored at his kindergarten class awards ceremony; last night he played in a baseball tournament, and this morning was his last soccer game of the season. We praise God for Ben’s healing and progress. I greatly appreciate your comments and am very grateful for your prayers!


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