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Garibay Soup: Ella's Heart Story

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Ella's Heart Story

I'm back! I'm putting my blogging once again before my marriage, my family, eating ~ yes and even sleeping!!!! Okay... maybe not that extreme, but I do apologize for my absence. Of course I missed all my other carnivals I participate in this week AGAIN, but you know I couldn't miss out on Fro' Me to You!! Make sure you head over there and check out Kristen's great blog.

I thought today I would share a couple pictures of Ella at 7 weeks old, and tell the dreadful story of the day she almost died. The day our world went spinning out of control, and the day we realized how strong God can make you in the times you need to be strong.

Ella was only 7 weeks old. It was October 4, 2007 and she wasn't keeping her food down. I thought she had a stomach bug and decided that it might be wise to take her in just to have the doctor look at her. The decision I made was weird, I never took Jayden to the doctor's for the flu, but I had this burning thing inside of me saying SOMETHING ISN'T RIGHT. I think the thing that bothered me the most was that she didn't have a fever. I wanted so badly for her to have a fever, because that meant that yes, it was just a bad case of the flu.

The doctor looked her over agreed with me that it must be the stomach bug and to only give her pedialyte. All night long Gino and I took turns holding her - she didn't want to be set down and it was a hard, hard night.

Fast forward to Friday, October 5, 2007. The phone rings and it was her doctor's nurse asking how she was doing and said that they would like to see her since it was Friday just to check up on her. I honestly did not feel like driving there, and she was starting to keep her pedialyte down, but I went. When Wendy, her nurse, came in she was putting the oxygen level checker on her toe trying to get her levels - she couldn't. She had someone else come in while she went to find the doctor, she wasn't telling me at the time that Ella's chest was retracting and there was a serious problem.... I guess she didn't want me to freak while she went to get Ella's doctor. Dr. Mills walked in and from the look on his face I knew that something was very, very wrong. I started spinning and feeling like I was going to black out. I just remember them taking Ella and running across the street with her to the hospital.

At the hospital they were trying everything they could to get an IV in her, but the couldn't - her veins collapsed. Her heart rate wasn't even registering on the monitors, and when it would I'd see numbers like 280, 300 and then nothing just plus signs. I felt alone, scared and just wanted my baby to stop crying and I wanted to know what in the world was wrong with her.

Gino finally arrived and shortly after they had the crash cart in and they were restarting Ella's heart - it worked. However, the damage had already been done. Her liver was enlarged, her organs were about to start shutting down, she needed a blood transfusion, and they wanted her intubated.

It was decided that Ella had Wolf-Parkinson-White syndrome and they wanted her in Portland where the specialists were. They had a team fly down from Portland to pick her up. It was a process, because she was intubated and they wanted an extra set of hands that could help, so my seat was taken. My baby went into the air without me. It was 11:00pm on Friday night and we had to leave our son behind and drive blindly into the night. We had a 4 hour trip ahead of us and didn't know if our daughter was dead, or alive.

The team called when they landed and informed us that all went well and they were getting into the ambulance to transport her to the Children's Hospital. Huge, huge, huge sigh of relief. We finally got there and went to her room and layed down. It was about 6am when they do shift change and the new nurse walked in and said, "This one here is awake." Gino and I jumped up so quick and ran over to her. She actually looked at us and had these eyes like she wanted to tell us about all of the horrible things that she had been through. This picture is me looking at her right after they took out the tubes.

We ended up staying there for a few days then taking her home. She continued to go in and out of SVT (fast heart rate) all throughout the month of October. Luckily I started to know the signs and could tell when listening to her heart. So, if caught in time it was easy to stop by suffocating her with a bag of ice, which I personally couldn't do. We had to take her in to her doctor's to have it done. Once we realized that her medicine wasn't working we went back to Portland to have her watched closely in the ICU while they tested another medicine that could cause heart failure, but it worked!! When she's around 6 they're going to do a catheter ablation and close the extra pathway that's in her heart.

Her doctor was telling us that if we didn't take her in to the doctor's she would have stopped breathing. Her organs were already shutting down and we would have lost our precious, beautiful Ella. I couldn't even fathom the thought. Heavenly Father kept us so strong throughout this, and I'm thankful every day for the blessings he has given us. I'm thankful that everyday I have this beautiful little girl to smile at me.
To follow Ella's story as it unfolds her website is HERE

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12 Comments:

Blogger We are THAT Family said...

Oh, my. I thought our story was hard. Wow. What a miracle your baby is. I'm so glad you listened to your instinct and took her in! God was with you.

Thanks for sharing her story. You are blessed with a beautiful miracle!

June 19, 2008 at 11:13 AM  
Blogger Shimmy Mom said...

What a miracle baby. It is amazing how much strength the Lord gives us in our time of need. My second "Trial" was born with neonatal apnea and spent her first 10 days in NICU. I remember that I never cried until the day they told me she could come home. I knew it would be alright until it was and THEN it hit me that I could have lost her. I'm glad that she is doing well and sorry that she still has so much ahead of her. But if she's anything like mine, she'll be a fighter for the rest of her days! There is something about children who have to fight for life. They stay fighters. They are strong little spirits who won't take no for an answer!

June 19, 2008 at 11:36 AM  
Blogger Happy Mommy said...

What a miracle your beautiful daughter is! It is wonderful to hear God being praised all through your story!

June 19, 2008 at 11:46 AM  
Blogger Tammy said...

Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

A true miracle!! She is just beautiful too!!!

June 19, 2008 at 1:25 PM  
Blogger Crayl said...

I am so very thankful that the Dr. Office called YOU! What an amazing story of grace and strength.

June 19, 2008 at 2:14 PM  
Blogger Valarie said...

She is just beautiful! Thank the Lord that she is better. God has big plans for that little girl. :)

June 19, 2008 at 3:36 PM  
Anonymous Muthering Heights said...

What a terrible ordeal! We had a NICU baby, but still, I can't imagine how terrified you were. Thankfully you could lean on God, knowing he was in control!

She looks great though, very healthy, so hopefully this will all be behind her soon! :)

June 19, 2008 at 5:31 PM  
Blogger Awesome Mom said...

What a cute little girl!! I know how scary it is to have your child flown in the air with out you. When Evan had his stroke we drove six hours to get to the hospital that took care of him.

June 19, 2008 at 6:42 PM  
Blogger HRH said...

What an incredible story. Wow. I am so relieved that she is doing better. She is such a cutie.

June 19, 2008 at 7:34 PM  
Blogger GoofyJ said...

It was great to read your story - I had read the heart page before, but I enjoyed reading this too. So glad all worked out well - these heart kids are so amazing. I relate to a lot of what you said because of our Jacob having open heart surgery. So glad you didn't have to go that route - and I am so glad she is doing so well.

June 20, 2008 at 9:01 AM  
Anonymous LifeatTheCircus said...

I am so glad that story had a happy ending. As a mother, I can only imagine how difficult that 4 hr drive was for you and your hubby.

June 20, 2008 at 11:34 AM  
OpenID thediaperdiaries said...

She is so beautiful. I love the 2 little bottom teeth. amazing story!!

June 22, 2008 at 10:34 AM  

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