Sunday, July 15, 2012

We Keep Going

Jarod's mom arrived Thursday night, making our lives much less complicated, and our house 1000 times cleaner. Friends have been helping us with Zinashi, but it is such a relief to have someone who can take charge of her care all of the time. There is a lot less juggling of schedules, though still some.

sisters!

We have trouble getting time together as a family unit, but we are managing. The weekend allowed for some meals together at the hospital, which isn't ideal, but it's what we've got, and we won't complain.

little miss serious

Zinashi is curious about everything going on with Elvie, so we talk about all of Elvie's special accessories and what they do and why. For one visit, Zinashi happened to get to the hospital just in time for NG tube placement. That was pretty exciting stuff, and Zinashi was very serious about seeing what went on. Now on the list for home school science: how a tube that goes in through your nose can make it all the way to your stomach.

sticking her tongue out

The doctors identified a parasite and then lab cultures showed that Elvie's UTI was the result of not one, but four (FOUR!) bacteria, two of which are resistant strains. Once she was on the appropriate medicine for both parasite and bacteria, it took about twelve hours for her to start to perk up. She woke up Saturday morning (at 4am, which was not the joy of my existence), ready to make life happen. She now sticks out her tongue when I stick out mine, moves a ton more overall, and seems to figure out something new every day, like how a bit of light hyperventilating will get her what she wants pretty fast since it also makes her respiration monitor go off.  Little dickens.

face wipes as a fave toy

She is also interested in playing a lot more. Saturday morning, she spied the diaper package and spent a good ten to fifteen minutes grabbing at it and feeling all its sides and corners and insides.  Later, on my lap, I handed her my face wipes package, and it was like I gave her a pony.  I am now on the hunt for baby toys that are not ugly, but make a nice crinkly sound.  Someday she'll be strong enough to pull the plastic packages towards her, and she's come too far to be allowed to nosh on some chokables.

goofity goof

For me the hardest part of the hospital stay is that I don't get to see nearly enough of my Zinashi.  The second hardest part has been the sleep deprivation.  Last night, Jarod took night duty and stayed with Elvie for most of today as well so that I could both hang out with Zinashi and get some sleep.  Zinashi and I watched a movie together last night, and I slept a solid eleven hours shortly thereafter.  We woke up in time to go to our favorite neighborhood bakery for beignets.  Then the rest of today I did things like change the cat litter and do laundry and put soup ingredients in the crock pot.  It was with a little ache in my heart that I headed back to the N to swap places with Jarod at the hospital.  I know that this is the best place for Elvie right now, and that the staff here is working super hard to get her well enough to go home, but it's still tough to have my babies in two places, and my life in limbo.  I miss each girl when I am not with her, and I miss being the caretaker of my little family and our little house, even if I do a really poor job of cleaning the place much of the time.  I'm just looking forward to the day that all of us get to be at home.

But for now, I am here at the hospital, perfecting the art of putting together lounge-y outfits that go from sleep in the cribside chair bed to ready for the day's meetings with medical staff in moments.  By the time I'm done here, I'll have a full arsenal of ensembles that will allow me to sleep in my clothes, therefore avoiding the act of getting dressed in the morning.  I'll just go ahead and revel in the glory of that possibility.

As always, thank you for being here.  We feel your love, and it makes our days better.  I have no doubt that all your prayers, thoughts, and well wishes make a difference for Elvie and for our little family as a whole.  You guys are the best.

24 comments:

  1. We have put you and your little family on our prayer list at both churches. I have been showing everyone her little picture, so that people have her face in their minds when they pray for her. I enjoy reading your updates and seeing the progress that is being made. I share Elvie's story and yours with everyone I can. We will continue to pray for you, and if you need anything from podunk Western KS, just let me know. :)

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  2. hang in there!!! just a little while and you will be a happy family of four! :)

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  3. Elvie already looks a little sturdier and healthier in this picture than in the last post. You're doing it!!!

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  4. Ok, I don't even know you guys, but reading the words "perk up" totally made my day. HOORAY for perking up! (Also, love the 'sibling' label on Zinashi's shirt!) Take care and I hope you are able to all be together at home soon.

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  5. You'll get through it, all of you. Thinking of you all the time, with love and hopefulness.

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  6. It sounds like you are staying positive and I know that makes a huge difference for both kids. Keep it up, you are doing awesome!

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  7. Praying for you guys! Love, The Websters

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  8. Wow! Elvie looks better already - really - her face looks a little more fuller and she looks much healthier! So excited to see how much more she comes into her own. Zinashi is beautiful as always - you should be proud of yourselves!

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  9. She looks better already!

    In terms of crinkling toys, my daughter has this one and adores him to pieces: http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=11225203&searchURL=false

    We call him Crinkle Dog, and even though she's a year now, he's still one of her favorite friends. I keep him in the diaper bag to entertain her when she's being cranky in restaurants. =)

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  10. Her little face is looking fatter! YAY!!!

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  11. Elvie *is* looking much better--her colouring, her alertness, even her hair. :) Sounds like she's rallying & her little personality is coming out from behind the illness. Way to go mama! You can do this.

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  12. Elvie really is looking better, yay!!! And wanting to play -melt! Hang in there. You're all making progress. (And L*maze rattles and toys are great and so cute.)

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  13. She is definitely looking bigger, stronger and chubbier in those photos. Love the little pokey tongue.

    It must be so difficult having your two girls in different places, both needing you with them. Hopefully it won't be for much longer. Thanks so much for taking the time to keep us all updated, I think of you all often during the day.

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  14. For some reason, the cyberworld keeps eating my comments over the past few days. I am so happy to see Elvie looking brighter and more interested in her world. I continue to keep you and your family in my thoughts.

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  15. Elvie looks great!! (So does Zinashi!) I am so glad the docs are figuring it out and getting Elvie what she needs to feel better. I am sorry you have to deal with being split up for a bit and hope that Elvie will be well enough that you can all be cozy at home together soon!!

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  16. YAY! Elvie's color is a million times better and I can see a sparkle in her eyes now. Such good news. My daughter's first book was 'Fuzzy Bee and Friends' and it makes a wonderful crackling sound and is really the perfect first toy, as well as book. Hoping for a good week for you all.

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  17. Elvie is looking alot better. The pics of the girls together melts my heart. Hope you have a great week ahead of you with lots of progress and improvement for Elvie.

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  18. And Zinashi's hair still looks' ultra-cute!!! How is that even POSSIBLE?

    So glad that the medication is starting to work. She has the same hollow look that my babies had, and I know how much it hurts the heart. A body that is clear of infection and ready for lots of food is such a great blank canvas - I can't wait to see those little cheeks get chubby.

    You are doing such a great job, Mary. Caring for children is hard - doing it in a hospital context must be a million times harder. But love doesn't just talk, love DOES, and you're doing it. Sending you a big virtual hug xxx

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  19. I wanted to come out of lurkdom to admit I've been cheering you on, silently, for a few months now. Both your girls are beautiful and Elvie definitely has more of a sparkle in her eye in these photos. Thinking of your little family every day and wishing you well.

    Chris

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  20. Aww, Elvie looks like she's put on a bit of weight! Woop!

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  21. Still thinking of you guys often and keeping Elvie in my prayers. (Hugs)

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  22. I can't help but echo all the comments above as to how well Elvie looks -- I noticed it IMMEDIATELY in the pictures, even before I read the details. And then was so happy to read that she is free from her parasite and four bacteria ... free enough to interact more back and forth. What a delight and joy.

    And I'm thinking of you with compassion and love and support, especially regarding your words on missing Zinashi ... you must feel so torn, even knowing that there is no alternative, no other choice you can make (to Elvie being in the hospital, that is). I'm also cheering you on as you drag yourself out of your chair to always change Elvie's diapers and do all other care for you that you can. What love and devotion, especially when you're struggling so hard with sleep deprivation. And with what Elvie has been through, that is so key to her well-being and stability.

    And this is already long, but as a copy editor, I also have to admire your grammar and spelling perfection. Wow. Especially while being sleep-deprived! Your profs would be proud! :)

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  23. A child who is curious and playful with the world is doing a hundred times better health wise - this is awesome about Elvie! It must be so hard having your heart divided across two locations. Hang in there. The good work you did bonding and loving Zinashi to a confident young girl is proving its worth. Look forward in anticipation to the day you are all together under your own roof again!

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