Saturday, June 30, 2007

Praises for Joella!

We have so many things to praise God for! First and foremost, our little girl is making leaps and bounds in her improvement. We went to the hospital to visit her last night and they have completely taken her off the morphine. They still give her a little shot of it right before they change her dressings, but she no longer gets a continual dose throughout the day. This makes her much more alert and last night she was awake and acting like a wriggly baby.

Ella has a hearty appetite and is able to digest 18 cc’s an hour through her feeding tube. This was the goal, so on Monday they plan to start trying her on a special bottle called the Haberman feeder. Apparently this has a very soft nipple that will have the least impact on her gums and lips. We just pray that she doesn’t have too many blisters develop through using this bottle.

Ella is maintaining her own body temperature, which is wonderful! And she is fully breathing on her own with no assistance. They do have some humidity running into her incubator just to keep her airways moist.

We are also very thankful that Ella has a great group of nurses working on her. They talk to her and play with her, which makes Mama very happy. They even put little toys in her incubator for her to look at. They put this plastic aquarium thing in her incubator and she loves it! She will stare at all the moving frogs and monkeys, completely encompassed in them.

Ella loves hearing our voices and responds when we talk. My mom (GiGi – Grandma Gale) was singing “Jesus Loves me” to her and Ella couldn’t take her eyes off GiGi. She loved the music. Whenever her Daddy talks to her she always turns her head and stares at him. Of course Joe completely melts when he looks into those big blue eyes.

In all of our ultrasound pictures Ella would be sucking on her fingers. Well, last night she was trying so hard to suck on her fingers, but she couldn’t because they were all wrapped in gauze. She would try for a little bit, then let out a cry out of sheer frustration. Poor girl! As a former thumb sucker I understand her frustration. They can’t give her a pacifier because it could create blisters, but the poor girl is trying everything she can to suck her thumb.

On a personal note, I (Katie) got my staples out yesterday morning, so that makes me much more comfortable! I feel like a new person!

Joe and I are remaining realistic about the future. We have a very long road ahead of us and there will definitely be times of struggle, but for now we are so thankful to have a baby that is defying the Dr.’s original thoughts. We were talking to her primary Dr. the other day and thanked him for his work. He said, “I haven’t done anything. She’s doing all of this on her own.” We know that it is the prayers of all of you that have gotten her this far, and we are eternally grateful for that. The abundance of love that has been shown to Joe and I is so overwhelming! There is no way we can ever express our gratitude. Thank you all so much!

Some prayer requests for this weekend:
1) Joe went to the hospital and assisted in her dressing changes this morning. He wanted to go and get a “lay of the land” before I did, that way he could prepare me for what is in store. Her most affected areas which need the most care are her little legs (her left one in particular). Visually, it looks really sore and hurting, but the nurses expressed that the wounds are healing much better than prior. Also, her left calf muscle is undeveloped and needs to be stimulated to grow. Possibly, over time, the muscle will come back, but we don’t know how that is going to affect things in the future. Please pray for continual healing for Ella’s legs! Her hands look terrific, yet please pray for them as well.
2) Please pray that she won’t get too many blisters in her mouth from the bottle feeding.
3) Joe and I have a “family meeting” with the primary Dr. and the Dermatologist on Monday. Hopefully this will give us an insight into the next biopsy and how much longer she will need to stay in the hospital. Please pray that Joe and I ask the right questions and that this meeting goes well.


Anonymous said...

So wonderful to hear of baby Ella's positive progress!! We marvel at your strength and continue to send happy thoughts and loving prayers your way.
Love and smiles,
Ali, Chris, Maddison and Ashton Pfautz

Becky said...

Yeah Ella! You're such a fighter! Katie and Joe, the prayers will continue for the longhaul! You are such a witness to everyone around you!

Becky said...

This saying is on my mom's computer and she and the rest of my family are praying for you.

"Have no fear for what tomorrow may bring. The same loving God who cares for you today will take care of you tomorrow and every day. God will either shield you from suffering or give you unfailing strength to bear it. Be at peace, then, and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations.
-St. Franis de Sales"

You guys are pretty much living out this quote but I thought it was a good reminder anyway!

Rene said...

We continue to pray that each day brings better and better news for your whole family. She is beautiful and we can't wait for the announcement that she is finally out of the hospital and HOME where she belongs.

Tharp's said...

Keep pushing and fighting, Ella! God is Faithful! Joella Gale Murray, you are precious in His sight! Our hearts are there with you and your family in prayers of praise and petition to our Lord! We love you, Ella!
In Him, The Tharp's

Lynelle said...

Katie, Joe, precious Joella, Gale and Ron -- my mom just forwarded me the information and I have read this blog with prayers going up as a I read. My heart hurts and rejoices with you at the same time. I will be faithful to check this blog and pray with you. May the Joy of the Lord be your strength today!
Lynelle Bane Wolfe

Kristina Transue said...

Katie and Joe,

My family's prayers are with you. Your family portrait is beautiful. I love reading your posts and seeing how God is working in your lives. Ella's progress is so encouraging and I can't help but envision God's healing hand extending down to her. Keep us updated!

Kristina Transue and Family

Scott H said...

Katie, Joe and Ella-

Your New Colony Family is thrilled for the continued improvement and blessings. Know that we are praying constantly for you all.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." -Jer 29:11

Here's to that Future. Continued blessing to you all, In HIS name.
Scott, Jen, Caleb, Bethany and Sarah Hamilton

Dee said...

Jesus we PRAISE YOU for Your Precious Gift of beautiful Joella!
I Bless You for all You gifted us with in this little bundle of Joy - pure Joy!

O Lord, You are our Father
We are the clay
You are the potter
We all are the work of Your Hand.
Isaiah 64:8

For all You will teach us;
all we will experience in You through Joella.
You are with her!

Abba, PRAISE YOU for reminding us of Your Servant Job.
A man You describe in Your Word as "perfect and upright, one that feared God; shunned evil.
You told satan there is none like him in the earth!"

The Lord said to satan

"Behold, he is in thine hands, but

So satan smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown.

Psalms 139:14

Glory to His Holy Name Forever!

Christina Patnode said...

My mom (Melody Belfiore) just sent me this link. I can not express how sorry I am that you are having this happen to your little girl. I can say that I know how hard it is going to visit your brand new baby every day in the hospital NICU and not having them there when you go home. You make sure that you are taking time for yourself to and keep praying...that helps alot. Preston always loved music when he was in the NICU. They have new toys at Carters that you can pull and they play a lullaby. They actually have a pretty pink butterfly. I wish you and your family nothing but the best!!!

Danielle said...

Hey guys!! Isn't the power of prayer incredible. I was just recalling a story of Ellica to a friend the other day, of how elli was running on pavement and fell right on her face, scraping her nose, lips and gums right above her two front teeth. It was at school so there were alot of people around that immediatly started praying because we weren't sure the extent of the damage. Even her little class prayed. Nothing ended up being broken and the coolest part was that in one week her face was completely healed of all the cuts without a trace of any scarring. I've seen God's hand work so quickly when many people are praying. Each prayer answered feels like such a miracle. So we'll keep on praying and Ella's gonna keep on getting better!!!! We love you guys!!
Kevin, Danielle & Elli

Jean said...

Rebecca has been keeping me posted. I have people praying in Arizona and many other places as well as my friends in Casper. Rebecca sent this on to Shannon Lack so I could see Joella. Katie & Joe you are such an inspiration to see your faith in the Lord. I know he looks down and is so pleased with the strength that HE can only give. These are the times only the Lord can take us through. I read in the paper this morning that you will still have your job. Tell Joella that she is Something Special In The Lord's eyes and mine too!! Give Mom & Dad a hug for me and let them give one to you an Joe and give one to Joella for me. I love you!! Jean Brown 7/2/07 6:45 PM