Surrey’s six-year-old Muskaan Grewal beginning a new life with her new heart (w/ gallery, video)

Published: August 3, 2013

STEPHANIE IP
VANCOUVER DESI

Pink and purple balloons and matching streamers dotted the crowded living room of the Grewal family home in Surrey. A glass trophy sits centred on a mantel, etched with the words, “Delta Rotary Youth ‘Golden Heart’ Award” and below that, “Muskaan Grewal.”

About a metre away, Muskaan herself sat in a large armchair in a corner, surrounded by tissue paper and gift bags. Her arms clutched a new stuffed animal — a giraffe with star-shaped spots.

“Are you going to name him?” asked a relative.

The six-year-old Surrey girl — who was born with dilated cardiomyopathy, which enlarges and weakens the heart — flashed her now famous toothy grin and nodded excitedly in response.

“Name him Muskaan!” chimed in a boy cousin, much to the amusement of family members looking on. “Muskaan No. 2!”

Six-year-old Muskaan Grewal, who recently underwent a heart transplant procedure in Edmonton, returned to BC and an adoring crowd of friends of family at the family home in Surrey Saturday, August 3. Jason Payne/ PNG)

But there is only one Muskaan Grewal in this world and on Saturday, the young heart transplant recipient returned home to B.C. in good spirits, ending a very uncertain chapter in her life.

Last fall, she became the youngest person in the world to receive a specialized heart pump, a battery-operated piece of machinery that kept her alive and stable.

After 10 months of living with the temporary solution, Muskaan finally received a new heart. The surgery was performed July 17 at Edmonton’s Stollery Children’s Hospital, where she had been recovering from an infection.

A Facebook page maintained by a cousin shared regular photos and updates about Muskaan’s progress throughout the entire ordeal. Strangers who heard her story from Facebook and in media were so touched by it that some even visited Muskaan when she was in hospital.

This weekend saw the girl and her father return home and into the waiting arms of nearly two dozen family members at a surprise homecoming party.

“It’s going to be a new life for us, after so many years,” said Muskaan’s dad Harman Grewal.

In the past, his daughter’s old heart restricted her from keeping up with others on a playground, and she was often so exhausted, she was unable to walk for long periods of time.

“Before, we always worried about Muskaan. It’s always scary for us,” Grewal told Vancouver Desi. “Now we are more comfortable because of her new heart and now, a new life for her.”

Also waiting for the girl at home was a large and colourful banner decorated by her cousins, covered with Disney Princess stickers and various descriptive words like “brave”, “lovable”, and “fighter.”

“Charismatic” and “cheeky” weren’t on the banner but would have also been fitting.

Aside from the small hint of a scar that peeks above her shirt collar, Muskaan’s playfulness and precocious sense of humour would never betray the many challenges she’s already had to conquer.

“I was so surprised,” Muskaan said of the massive welcoming committee that greeted her. “I said, ‘That’s the surprise! Oh.’ I thought it was just a little party.”

Her only complaint about returning home is that her bed isn’t “bouncy like before” after being away for more than a month.

“It was way comfier,” she said, sparking laughter from aunts and uncles.

It will still be a year before doctors can say how well Muskaan’s body is handling the new heart, but for now, Grewal is just happy to be home with his little girl, who has been recovering steadily since the surgery.

“I don’t have words to say or express all my feelings but I’m very happy,” Grewal said. “It’s amazing. I look at Muskaan — she stayed strong all the time.

“Now she has a new heart and is starting a new life.”

Related Stories:



Picture 1 of 8

Six-year-old Muskaan Grewal, who recently underwent a heart transplant procedure in Edmonton, returned to B.C. and an adoring crowd of friends of family at the family home in Surrey Saturday, August 3. Jason Payne/ PNG

sip@theprovince.com
twitter.com/stephanie_ip


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,





Featured

Abbotsford's Ravinder Singh Atwal has been identified online as the truck driver who died in a truck crash on Highway 99 near Delta on Wednesday. The Abbotsford father was killed when his dump truck hit the highway median and burst into flames. Submitted photo/Facebook.

Abbotsford trucker killed on Hwy 99 remembered as ‘one of the nicest guys’

GLENDA LUYMES VANCOUVER DESI An Abbotsford father killed in a fiery crash on Highway 99 is being remembered as hard-working and friendly by fellow truck…
Continue Reading »

A man reads the latest issue of French weekly newspaper Charlie Hebdo bearing a cartoon of Prophet Mohammed at a French bookseller in Abidjan on January 19, 2015. SIA KAMBOU/AFP/Getty Images

Mumbai police arrest newspaper editor for reprinting Charlie Hebdo cartoon

VANCOUVER DESI Mumbai police have arrested and since bailed out the editor of an Urdu language newspaper for reprinting a Charlie Hebdo cartoon of the…
Continue Reading »

Indian spectators watch as a float carrying a sign that reads "Congratulations! It's a Baby Girl" passes by during the Indian Republic Day parade in New Delhi on January 26, 2015. The float represented India's Ministry of Women and Child Development.  An estimated 26 million babies are born anually in India, a country considered to be one of the worst places to be born a girl because of a societal 'gender gap' that favours boys and preferences for male children. ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP/Getty Images

Father in India arrested for attempted murder after trying to bury his daughter alive

VANCOUVER DESI A father in India has been arrested for attempted murder after he tried to bury his 10-year-old daughter alive, according to Britain’s Daily…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Abbotsford's Ravinder Singh Atwal has been identified online as the truck driver who died in a truck crash on Highway 99 near Delta on Wednesday. The Abbotsford father was killed when his dump truck hit the highway median and burst into flames. Submitted photo/Facebook.

Abbotsford trucker killed on Hwy 99 remembered as ‘one of the nicest guys’

GLENDA LUYMES VANCOUVER DESI An Abbotsford father killed in a fiery crash on Highway 99 is being remembered as hard-working and friendly by fellow truck…
Continue Reading »

Opposition Muted to Harper’s New Anti Terror Bill

BY Ujjal Dosanjh Special to Vancouver Province I smell an election coming. Not in October 2015; much sooner than that. Harper has just unveiled the…
Continue Reading »

Opposition parties treading carefully on new anti-terror legislation

By Stephanie Levitz THE CANADIAN PRESS OTTAWA — Anti-terrorism legislation introduced by the Conservative government Friday received a cautious reception by the opposition parties who…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

Vancouver-BC

Raise your hand, send us a selfie and make a statement against racism (with video)

VANCOUVER DESI Vancouver Desi’s digital anti-racism campaign, Raise Your Hands Against Racism, officially kicked off Thursday, with people across the Lower Mainland sending in selfies…
Continue Reading »

File photo: Curry chicken on rice. Sam Leung/PNG

Spicy treats on menu as 8 chef teams battle for Vancouver’s second-annual Curry Cup

VANCOUVER DESI A group of Lower Mainland chefs are set to go head-to-head with their South Asian cooking skills as they gear up for Vancouver’s…
Continue Reading »

Shah Rukh Khan, Abhishek Bachchan, Deepika Padukone, Sonu Sood and Boman Irani in a still from the Bollywood film Happy New Year.

Indian expat avoids stalking conviction by blaming Bollywood for his behaviour

IANS Sydney  – An Indian man’s excuse that Bollywood love stories encouraged him to excessively approach and stalk women helped him avoid conviction in the…
Continue Reading »

File photo: Commuters hang by doors of a crowded local train in Mumbai, India, Tuesday, July 8, 2014. Three men were killed on Monday after they attempted to take a selfie by a moving train near Agra. AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade

College students killed while attempting train selfie in India

VANCOUVER DESI Three college friends on their way to India’s Republic Day celebrations were killed by a speeding train after they tried posing for a…
Continue Reading »

Screen shot of Shah Rukh Khan's first video tweet. Submitted.

Shah Rukh Khan sends out India’s first tweet using Twitter’s new mobile video camera

VANCOUVER DESI Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan was the first-ever Indian to use Twitter’s freshly launched mobile video camera. Twitter announced the new feature on…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Akshay Kumar

Askhay Kumar offers martial arts training to visually impaired girls

PRASHANT SINGH HINDUSTAN TIMES Last year, Akshay Kumar — who was a professional martial arts trainer before he started acting — launched an initiative to…
Continue Reading »

Shah Rukh Khan (L) and Kajol (R) are rumoured to be appearing in the next Rohit Shetty film. Getty Images.

Rohit Shetty tightlipped on SRK, Kajol casting rumours

IANS Mumbai — Bollywood’s blockbuster director Rohit Shetty is remaining tightlipped on rumours he’s managed to rope in a casting coup of Shah Rukh Khan…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood sex

Sonam Kapoor never planned to use her father’s fame to jumpstart her Bollywood career

IANS Mumbai  – It’s always thought that Bollywood’s star children have it easy, but actress Sonam Kapoor says that at the start of her film…
Continue Reading »