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Yehia the Storyteller

The dialysis ward of Shaarei Zedek Medical Center held a special party in July 2019 for the "release" of the book written by 12-year-old Yehia, one of the children in our care. In spite of the fact that he must be hooked up to a dialysis machine three times a week – and lives with the implications of a failed kidney transplant – Yehia is one of the most cheerful and optimistic kids we know. He regularly entertains the Nephrology Department with songs in Arabic, Hebrew and English, and general nonsense as well.

About a year ago, every Thursday during dialysis, Hemda Dedovsky, one of the teachers in the Children’s Wards of the hospital, started a writing project with Yehia. She recorded, in Hebrew and Arabic, stories that Yehia developed about the ward and life in general. The tales were collected and Nana Hai, another of the teachers, created a delightful album with text and pictures.

The following is one of Yehia’s many tales:

I come to the ward for dialysis three times a week. I don’t like dialysis because it is very painful. But that is what God wanted.

When I undergo dialysis, I wait for my teachers. I write stories with Hemda. I wait for Nana who teaches me English, for Amal who teaches me arithmetic and Arabic, and Talila with whom I have art classes. I really love Helana whom I haven’t seen for a long while. We make music together with a darabouka and we sing songs in Russian.

When the teachers are not with me I just feel wretched and sometimes I fall asleep.

In the Dialysis Ward there are a lot of children: Muasass, Mohamad, Lily, Siam and Sara, Rymus, Shiraz, Patina and Jana. It helps a lot that there are many kids in the Dialysis Ward and I am not alone. I want everyone to donate kidneys for us and we ask God to help us, as the song goes “I believe in miracles, I know there is a God”.


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