First of all thank you for all of your positive comments about Dave's post yesterday. I've re read it going on 20 times and still get teary eyed. I am blessed with an amazing husband and my children hit the jackpot with Dave as their daddy!
Today, was another day with progress. While I was talking with one of the nuero doctors today he spoke about being cautiously optimisitc. This has always been one of my favorite sayings. He couldn't be more right, as this is how we feel as well. We don't want to lie to ourselves and think that one day Riley is going to be fully awake and ready to jump out of bed but, we truly do believe that our little fighter will be able to make many strides over time that will blow us all away.
Overnight, they turned the vent back on to allow Riley to rest. Good news was she had been breathing on her own the majority of the day yesterday so we knew she was almost ready to be taken off.
At 5:30 this morning after finally dozing off again I was woken up by the xray tech asking me to leave the room so they could do Riley's chest xray. As I looked over, saw the machine all ready to go, I almost punched the lady. More then a 2 second notice to vacate the room, especially in my sleepy state would have been nice!
Talk began early about removing Riley from the vent. I made it very clear I did not want it done without Dave present. I was worried about the aftermath and also knew Dave would want to be there as well. They respected our wishes and waited.
We listened in on morning rounds and Dr. Dre, the resident caring for Riley, rattled off everything about her without even a glance at her notes. I joked about her dreaming about her patients and she said well Riley is my patient. She has been an extremely caring doctor who is so good at what she does and I feel the connection she has with our daughter. The nurses cheer when she does something new as do most of the doctors on the floor.
Riley's levels that were of concern are becoming more stable. Her WBC numbers are getting back in to the range they should be and from a medical standpoint her body is doing what it needs to be doing.
Before they removed the vent the doctor who made the final call let us know that he was only doing it because he believed her to be ready but, he couldn't guarantee that she wouldn't have a set back and need to go back on. We were fine with that and waited patiently for them to do the procedure.
Tube came out with no issues and other then secretions and boogers Riley has been doing great! She is being given a medicine to help with her inflamed airways and is also on Albuterol breathing treatments every 4 hours.
Riley's eyes were wide open for about an hour after they removed the tube. Her left eye is still tracking to the left but, when I last spoke to Dave tonight he noticed some improvement over this morning.
We also had some wonderful visitors today. Mark and Shelly Hoherd came by with yummy cookies and an adorable piggy for Riley. I can't put in to words how special it was to have them visit us. Not only as family friends who have basically watched me grow up but, also as parents themselves. We both view them as strong people who have endured too much themselves and yet, took the time to be with us and visit Miss Riley. Thank you both of you.
Debbie stopped by again today and as always it is comforting to see her in the room.
Dave's mom Marie and step dad Jim were with us for the extubation period and Jim, having had a vent himself, I am sure knew what a relief it was for Riley to finally get that sucker out.
My bff Erica and her parents Jeanne and Bill paid us a visit as well and I was able to see Gavin and Donovan (Dave's little buddy) as we all walked up to the 6th floor together. We were honored to have Jeanne and Bill pray over Miss Riley. I have always admired their faith as far back as to when I first met Erica. I've struggled recently with my own faith and their presence and prayers helped to restore the peace within me that I needed.
My other bff Leane and her mom stopped by around the same time as well. They were able to be in the room when WE GOT TO HOLD RILEY for the first time in 9 days. The picture of the 3 of us is courtesy of Leane. What an amazing moment. Riley's breathing seemed to calm in my arms and I can't explain what it felt like to hold her close and share a moment with my beautiful little girl. We will be able to hold her more and more now and I know it will be good for all of us. My dad walked in while I was holding her and I think my tears and the fact that Riley was in my arms nearly gave him a heart attack.
As Leane and her mom were leaving our dear friends Anthony and Nuryel arrived. 2 years ago we spent new years with them and our friends Uncle Mike and Tia T and we all joked about what if we all were pregnant at the same time. Well their son Xavier was born in Nov of 2011 and Mia, Mason and Riley in Feb 2012. They guys still think it was a conspiracy.
So, what you've all been waiting for...... here are a few pics from our special day.
Riley still needs many prayers and good thoughts. The extent of her neurological damage is still really unknown and even when the next MRI shows us the "knowns" she will need all the support she can get to help her heal. We are waiting for PT/OT/and EI to start and it will be soon. Riley has her young age and young brain cells at her advantage. How she develops and grows is beyond our immediate control but, we know one thing for certain, having our baby girl present in our lives is enough. Everything else, will be icing on the cake. Riley is a fighter with an army behind her that will provide her with the best care to make sure she has the best opportunity to achieve the most in her life.
Thanks again for your continued support. May you all see the little miracles happening around you everyday as we watch our own little miracle make baby steps on the way to her recovery.
Dave, Megan, Logan, Mason and Courageous Riley