Earlier today, the Bush family informed the country that former First Lady Barbara Bush underwent open-heart surgery yesterday.  According to the doctors, they discovered a hardening of her aortic valve which looked dangerous.  When Mrs. Bush fell short of breath, they decided to take action:

Former first lady Barbara Bush had open-heart surgery Wednesday and is resting comfortably at a Houston hospital with her husband, former President George H.W. Bush, by her side, Bush spokesman Jim McGrath told ABC News.

“I am very impressed with and grateful to the wonderful team of doctors and nurses at Methodist Hospital who have helped Barbara,” ex-President Bush said in a prepared statement. “We have every confidence she is in the best hands.”

The former president’s chief of staff, Jean Becker, described Mrs. Bush, 83, as “alert and funny” after the surgery.

No doubt Mrs. Bush will get the best of medical care, but surgery at 83 is no picnic under any circumstances, let alone open-heart surgery.  It will take seven to ten days of recovery in the hospital, followed certainly by a long recuperation at home.  Since this follows a surgery four months ago for an ulcer, she will need close care and support to recover fully.

We’ll keep Mrs. Bush and her family in our prayers.  Feel free to offer your own thoughts in the comments.  I’d also like to ask for prayers and thoughts for the Admiral Emeritus (my father), who will likely get cranky at the fuss, as he had outpatient surgery yesterday and is recovering well at home.

Update: I’m not a fan of Robin Williams’ politics, but he’s a good entertainer, and he’s also getting an aortic valve replaced — so best wishes to Mr. Williams as well.