Semesa’s new lease of life

Semesa Nairoqo, 6,(left) with his dad Navitalai Tiritabua at Sai Prema Foundation in Suva. Picture: SUPPLIED/SAI PREMA

Thank you. These were the words uttered by grateful Semesa Nairoqo, six, after undergoing open heart surgery at the Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Children’s Heart Hospital.

Young Semesa was diagnosed with congenital heart disease when he was a-year-old, but doctors advised that surgery was not possible until his heart was matured enough.

His father, Navitalai Tiritabua, was in a state of shock and said there had been no follow ups after the diagnosis.

“We were just told to not let him play too much and to keep an eye on him at all times,” the 29-year-old said.

“During that time I was working in Lautoka and my son was staying with a family from church at Bilalevu, Sigatoka.

“They had taken him to the hospital when he had a fever and was informed that he had a hole in his heart.

“I heard some people say that when he grows up the hole would close, so I thought that would happen but that was wrong.”

He said last month, the family took Semesa for screening and discovered that the hole had gotten bigger and needed serious intervention.

“So I had to go to Lautoka, work, and come back for reviews.

“But after a while I just took leave because my son needed me.

“Even though I didn’t have enough, God provided everything for us.

“When I was told about this hospital, I had to take the opportunity and make the most of it to save my son’s life.”

He said he had faith that this was God’s plan for his son.

“I want my son to play just like those other children and get to live a healthy life.

“I have always felt sorry for him but now his life looks much brighter.”

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