Saturday, August 22, 2009

We're Home!

Hanging out with Daddy

Peace, I'm out. Ella waving bye as we walked out the door of her hospital room. So cute.

Can you believe it? We are already home and Ella is doing great! We got discharged yesterday late afternoon. Yesterday at the hospital Ella was much more alert and awake, she seemed comfortable and was tolerating her feeds ok. No smiles but she seemed to be doing well enough to go home. We just felt like things were fine and her doctors felt good about everything so we made the decision to come home. They changed her dressing once and her sling so we got to see part of her incision and it looks really good. It's a big scar but they did a very good job with it and we can't wait to see what her shoulder is going to look like. Today her swelling is already much better but it is going to take some time to heal obviously. They did'nt use any artificial materials in the reconstruction of her shoulder so it's just bone to bone growing back together and reattaching of muscles so it's going to take some time for everything to grow together and smooth out. We'll go back on September 2nd for a follow-up so we'll see then what the time-line is for how long she'll be in the sling and what the next steps are in her recovery process.

Went for a little wagon ride while still in the hospital. As you can see Ella just loved it! :) She slept through the whole thing but we had fun getting out of our room.

So far things have just been so much better than we thought they would be. Huge answer to prayer! I thought our hospital stay would be much longer and I had no idea what to expect for Ella as far as recovery, pain etc. She has just done so well so far, I just can't believe it. God is so faithful is all I can say. She took a little formula by mouth today and has only been on plain Tylenol to manage her pain so that is great news. She slept well last night, is smiling alot and wanting to play with her toys so we feel like she is getting back to her old self. Eva got the first smile from her of course. They just love each other. She is such a trooper! Thank you all for your continued prayers. We know that all of this is just a direct answer to prayer so thank you for lifting our family up.

We still have a long road ahead so please keep praying for a continued smooth recovery for Ella, for things to heal as they're supposed to and for no infection. There is still much to be done and overcome so we covet your prayers. Now that we don't have any scheduled surgeries in the near future we can really start hitting feeding hard and be more proactive as far as therapy, playing around with formula and feeding schedules so please keep that in your prayers as well. We have just been in a holding pattern for the past year getting ready for this surgery and have had no choice but to feed her every 3 hours around the clock. This has been the hardest year of our life and difficult for our whole family and now that this surgery is behind us we have some freedom and time to explore some different options with feedings. So, needless to say we still have a lot of hard things to overcome so please continue to pray for us.

We are amazed at the faithfulness of our Lord and how He cares so much for us. Thank you for encouraging us and carrying this burden with us. You all are a blessing. Keep praying!

Just hanging out with Aunt Amy. Aren't Eva's teeth pretty? I promise she doesn't have tooth decay, she just will do anything for M&M's so this is the result of a mouth full of chocolate. Nice.

Sweet Eva reading to Ella when she got home yesterday. She is the best big sister!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

First Day Post Surgery

More answered prayers. We had a good night last night and so far today has been pretty peaceful. Ella slept well last night and I slept pretty well too on my super comfy chair/bed. :) She woke up a couple of times but was not too fussy. Today she has slept most of the day but had one good awake time where she actually sat up in my lap. She wasn't real happy but wasn't screaming either so that was good. She is not wanting to do much other than sleep at this point but has had several small awake times. No smiles yet so she's not her normal smiley self yet but that will come. She is off of the morphine and is on some oral pain medication and so far seems to be doing fine. We started feedings and as of now she has had one feeding of pedialyte and one of formula through her G-button. We'll be working the rest of the day and night to bump up the volume of her feedings to try to get back to our home routine. Please be praying that she continues to tolerate her feedings and will do well eating my mouth. At this point we haven't tried anything by mouth so pray that once we start she will eat well.

Other than that things are going fairly well. This afternoon Ella has been more awake and has been moving more so we'll see how the rest of the day goes. Maybe we'll get a little crazy and take Ella for a wagon ride down the hall. I out. Keep praying for a smooth recovery. We might be going home tomorrow, we'll just have to see how things go tonight and tomorrow. Thank you for your continued prayers and support, keep it up!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Update on Ella

First off we want to thank all of you for your prayers for Ella. God has answered every one of them today. Praise God! We are so thankful and we felt at peace today and completely covered in prayer. It was a hard day but was definitely much better than anticipated. Ella's surgery only took about 4 1/2 hours. Amazing! They came and got her around 7 this morning and we went down with her to surgery holding. We sat and talked while the nurses and doctors went over last minute things and then around 8 am it was time to say bye for the morning. I was dreading this moment and definitely had a minor meltdown with lots of tears. :( They started surgery around 8:30 and by 1:30 we were already in recovery. What a shock! We and the doctors were all prepared that this would be a very long surgery but everything went beautifully with no complications. Thank you Lord! The surgery team was so well prepared and a few things that they thought would be major issues turned out not to be. They definitely had an amazing team planning and said that once they got in there there were no surprises and things just progressed smoothly. Again, another answer to prayer.

They said Ella did so well and they are all extremely pleased with the outcome. Her arm is in a soft wrapping and sling which she will wear for another 3-4 weeks. She is on a morphine drip and a small amount of oxygen and more than likely will continue with this through the night. She has woken up several times but is for the most part asleep, a little fussy but seems comfortable. Hopefully tonight will go well. We're just taking one day at a time so we're not sure how long our hospital stay will be yet. Please keep praying for a smooth recovery. We will probably start feedings tomorrow depending on how she's doing so please be in prayer about this as well.

We are praising God for His faithfulness. I think we are still in shock that this day has come and gone now. It has been anticipated since the day Ella was born so it's been a long time coming. We feel so blessed and even though we still have a long road ahead, this is one major hurdle that we have overcome and for that we are so thankful. So overwhelming. Thank you for ALL of your support, phone calls, texts, and comments today. It has been so encouraging to us and has helped hold us up during a difficult time. We love all of you and are overwhelmed by your love. Keep praying for Ella, your prayers are being answered. Sorry this might be a little vague, my head is spinning and I can't think through all the details from today but just wanted to give some sort of update. Love to all!

Sweet Ella right before surgery

Seeing her for the first time in recovery

Ella and Cc (Rick's Dad)

Ann and I

Precious cousin Adie (This was the first time we have gotten to meet our new neice Adie! She and Ella are going to be BFF)

Dee and Aunt Amy (Rick's mom and sister)

Mimi and Pawpaw (my parents)

Aunt Ann and Uncle Derran

Sweet Eva checking on Ella

Ella is out of surgery! The doctors said that all went smoothly and things went even better than expected. We are so thankful for this good news. Amy and Rick are back in the recovery room right now getting to see her. I'll let Amy post later and hopefully have some pictures of beautiful little Ella. Thank you for all of your prayers and thoughts today--they were felt here in a big way. Prayers are being answered minute by minute. Keep it up! :) Thank you Lord for carrying little Ella and for the great reports!

Surgery Update

Just wanted to let you all know that all is going well so far. Ella has been in for a little over two hours now and they have received one update so far. We should hear something every two hours. Let you know as I know.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Big Day

Hello Everyone, Ann here, Amy's twin sister. I will be keeping you posted through the day tomorrow until things calm down and Amy can resume with her hilarious blogs and Ella updates that we have all come to love. Amy and Rick checked in to Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children today at noon. They have been busy all afternoon with pre-op things. The surgery is scheduled for 8:30 tomorrow morning, August 19th. I will keep you posted as I receive updates (assuming that I will have wireless at the hospital). Thank you all for being such great supporters of Amy and Rick and Eva and Ella. Your prayers are needed more than ever to cover these next few days, especially tomorrow.

Amy and Rick, we love you so much. There are so many of us lifting up your sweet Ella in prayer to our Heavenly Father, who walks with us through difficult times, who is going before us, and who, above all, is faithful. God bless you with peace and comfort tonight and strength for tomorrow. We all love you very much.

Amy here. It's about 9:45 pm and I'm sitting here in our hospital room watching sweet Ella sleep. It's been a long day meeting with different doctors and taking care of so many things to prepare for surgery tomorrow. I can't believe this day is finally here. I'm thankful but at the same time I don't know if I'm ready for this. I cried most of the way to the hospital, cried walking into the hospital, cried in the waiting room during the admission process and so on. It's cool though. Been very emotional this week and had some hard moments in getting ready for all of this that have brought me to my knees in tears. I think this is just the human side of things because at the same time in my heart I hear the Lord speaking loud and clear, "Amy, I know you don't want to do this, but it's ok. I'm taking care of Ella and she is going to be fine." He is so faithful.

Thank you all SO much for all of your sweet cards this week and for the phone calls and texts. We have the best support system and could not do this without such amazing family and friends. Thank you for committing to praying for Ella. We have been so encouraged by your words and how you are helping carry this burden for us. Thank you! Keep the prayers coming! Tomorrow will be a long, hard day. They are expecting surgery to last 6+ hours possibly. Yeah, I already asked...they don't give sedatives to the parents. Son of a gun. Check in tomorrow for updates. Sorry I don't have any pictures to post but it's dark in here and am too tired to try to dig out my computer cord to upload pics. I'll do better later. Love to all! Pray hard!!!