And Another One Down….

October 24, 2012

So long Valium.

We can finally add the LAST icky, yucky, potent medication to the farewell pile.  Elena officially endured her last dose of Valium tonight.  Thank GOD!

My poor, sweet girl has been on more medication in this last year than most people endure in their lifetime.  Valium, Methadone, Phenobarbital, Fentanyl, Versed, Hydrocodone…..sick.  It feels great to have closed a chapter and be able to move forward.

Speaking of moving forward, Elena has continued to make great progress over the last month.  Her head control gets better each day.  We’ve been working on “prop sitting”, which is basically the first step to getting her to be able to sit up on her own.  Elena has been spending time each day in her “stander”.  It looks like a medieval torture device, but it supports her in a standing position.  We work so hard every.single.day.  She endures so much.  I know all the stretching of her tight muscles is brutal.  I can see her trying so hard to hold her little head up, even when it falls, she works so hard to pick it back up.  My little girl is a fighter and she makes her Momma so very proud!

We’re in the midst of ordering Elena some specialized chairs that will help support her during eating and play.  We are hopeful that these chairs can make things a little easier for her, allowing her to focus more on the task at hand and not having to support her body.

Elena’s doctor (one of the many!) remains pleased with her progress and effects from the Botox injections in August.  She will re-evaluate Elena’s need for more in December.  Until then, we’ll keep plugging away with our therapies and pray for continued progress.

Lastly, I know many of you ask for updates with her eating.  She is still doing well.  We have seen improvements in her coordination and speed.  Our therapist just had us order a new “cup” to introduce Elena to some thickened liquids next week.  It’s slow, steady progress.  But we’ll take it!

Here are some specific prayer requests for all Elena’s prayer warriors!
-Continued improvement with head/trunk control
-Improvement in vision, which is still a struggle for her
-Head growth
-Continued spasticity in her muscles so she can endure less Botox
-Continued progress in eating

Thanks again to all of you for your encouraging words and prayers.  As we approach the year mark of Elena’s injury, we are reminded of how impossible our situation would be without your support and our faith.  Prayers have gotten us through this last year and we know they are essential for the rest of our journey!

Elena in therapy showing off her sitting up skills

Happy girl in her new purple chair

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This is Elena. Our Light. You can see all the goodness and joy that shines from those deep blue eyes. She loves sneezes, yawns, industrial toilet flushes, automatic paper towel dispensers and The Star Spangled Banner. Music is her everything, specifically Moana, Frozen (really all Disney), Queen & Taylor Swift. Nothing makes her squeal quite like swimming, fast boat rides and her two brothers in trouble. In addition to her megawatt smile, Elena reminds us to cherish the smallest of victories, to live in the present, and to daily dwell in a posture of gratitude for every breath and every blessing.  

More About Our Story

I’m Emmalee, an ordinary gal born and raised in the Heartland. Wife to Chad, and Mom to Elena, Calvin & Turner, I spend most my days ridin’ dirty (literally so much trash) in my minivan carting kids to and fro. When I’m not being a Momager, I excel at self-care, cooking gourmet meals my kids won’t eat and deep-diving all the feelings. Most days, my attitude is gratitude, just taking life one step at a time.

Emmalee & Elena

Meet The Gals