We just visited Aleah, and to our surprise, she was no longer was on the oscillating ventilator. She had just been transitioned to the regular ventilator, which is providing her with about 40 breaths per minute at 48% oxygen. The amount of oxygen on this type of ventilator is higher, but this is okay and to be expected. Aleah was a bit more alert and was following the sound of our voice. She even tried to open her mouth as if she wanted to cry; however, she obviously can't at this point since the breathing tube is still in her mouth.
Additionally, Aleah's urinary catheter was removed this morning - the extra fluid in and around her lungs is gone, and her bladder is now functioning again. The doctor said that Aleah is exactly on the right path and that we can be assured that she will be fine! Praise God!!!
Kristen is being discharged this morning. We're planning to be home by around 1pm today. We're experiencing the feeling of being torn in two different directions at this point - home and the hospital - but we know that Alivia and Avery need to get back on a more regular routine at home. Because of them, going home is a bit easier since we know that they need us, too. Alivia and Avery are also excited to be coming home. But, they have had such a good time staying with MeMe and PaPa (Kristen's parents) and Christa, and we thank them dearly for taking such good care of our precious girls this week. Mark's parents have also helped tremendously this week - they raided the grocery store and brought lots of snacks for us to have, which Kristen then shared early this morning with some friends of ours from our Sunday School class. One of their family members was in labor just down the hall, and they were here all night waiting for their family's new arrival. Congratulations!!!
We are continually amazed with how far away people are reading the blog and praying for us. We read a comment this morning that one reader wrote earlier in the week. She lives just outside of Los Angeles, CA - Staci is a friend of Kristen's from way back when Kristen lived in Valencia, CA. Staci has been following our story and sharing it with her friends and family in California. And to think that only a month ago, I had never visited a blog site, much less posted entries to one.
Our week is coming to a close - it seems like an eternity since we came to the hospital initially on Monday night. We've loved a lot, cried even more, but most importantly have realized that God knew that all this was going to happen. He prepared us all along without us even being aware of what was happening. We will continue to keep everyone posted over the next week as we start the countdown for Aleah's arrival at home. As we say each time we post, thank you all for everything. We do appreciate your support.
Mark and Kristen
(2 of the most fortunate and blessed parents in the world)