Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Oh Ella

Ella, Ella, Ella.....I just want to bring her home with me every time I go to see her.  We have been holding her twice a day now for the past few days and I just can't believe how sweet she is.  It makes me think how lucky I was with our two boys....we had the 'privilege' of being woken up in the middle of the night by their cries, changing poopy diapers, being peed on, having sore arms and shoulders from holding them and comforting them, staring into their eyes and talking to them whenever we wanted to, and nursing them to health all hours of the day.  All these things were, at times, considered time consuming and taken for granted.

Lately, Erik and I have really noticed these 'privileges' that we seemed to overlook with the boys.  In how we wanted to hear Ella cry when she had a ventilator blocking her airway, how we cheer when she has a dirty diaper, how I would rather be nursing a sweet cuddly baby rather than a pumping machine, how we hang on to the last time we looked into Ella's eyes to carry us through until we see her again, and how we could care less about our sore arms and neck because we just want to hold her a little bit more.

I want to look at all areas of my life and think "is this really a burden?  or is it a privilege?"  What seems like a burden could really be a blessing.  I need to change my way of thinking.

Dear Ella has been doing well.  She had that scary drop in blood pressure on Thursday, but has recovered. Meds have been adjusted and she seems stable for the time being.  Her heart is functioning the same, which is good.  The cardiologists are adding another heart function medication so maybe we will see improvement.  Her feedings have steadily been increasing for the past 2 days.  They are still feeding her through a tube into her intestine, but it is going through and she is pooping on her own.  Her stomach still needs to improve so that she can eventually be fed into her stomach and finally through her mouth.  It is still a watching game.....see what little Miss Ella does and the doctors and nurses adjust what they can do.  We are definitely not out of the woods, but we continue to put our trust in Jesus daily and hourly.  Ella is His daughter and He holds her safe when I can't.

We continue to visit Ella twice a day, which is made possible by a wonderful group of friends who watch our boys while we go visit.  It is not a burden to have to go visit Ella in the hospital, it is a privilege and a wonderful blessing.


Sarah said...

Ella, Jesus is with you little princess. He is holding you, singing beautiful songs over you and loves you with His unending love.

Jenny said...

Christa, I love your heart. I love what you're learning through all of this and how you're willing to share it with all of us--you have such great perspective.

We'll continue to pray for little Ella.

Sue Asbjornsen said...

I also love what you are learning and sharing. I love your photo next to her. I love what Erik said about hearing God say "I've got this." I love being part a this prayer circle. I love how she is bringing many to worship Him. I love the witness of true community by your family and friends. I love the Hope that is in all this.

Linda said...

You and Erik are amazing parents!!
Thanks so much for sharing you hearts with us who love you and care for you. I wish I didn't live in Oregon so we could be helpful to you with the boys. Prayers will continually be prayed for Ella's healing and peace for you, Erik and the boys and your folks.
We love you, Linda and Bob Tackett

Cottage Mommy said...

As others have said, your sharing through this has been so inspiring and encouraging to me. You are in the middle of the toughest time and are so embracing what Jesus is doing and showing you. What a privilege to know you and your sweet family and to witness the miracles God is doing right now through all of you. Hugs and love to you today!

Courtney Henson

Marcia said...

I think little beautiful Ella is teaching everyone who is privileged to be part of her life story.Wonderful lessons! Such good news!!!!You are touching the life of so many people. !May God continue allowing Ella to grow!
Márcia and Paul

The Boggs Family said...

Oh you guys... we continue to pray for you and your sweet baby Girl. I am so encouraged by this post; and inspired to take to heart what you shared God is showing you through this too... to really consider my attitude for many things in life - especially those things that I might consider a burden initially. You are such a wonderful woman of God and mommy to your children! You guys have such tremendous faith and it is such a privilege to get to read your updates and thoughts as you guys post on the blog. We are so touched by what you write and share!! We love you guys much & continue to hold your family up in prayer to our great God!

Linda said...

My heart is smiling for you guys. I praise God for your your transparency of your hearts. I am continuing to praise God our Father for your miracle - Miss Ella.
Love to you both, Andi's mom - Linda

Coby said...

She is just so sweet and precious! Your faith and resting in the Lord is so inspiring! It's so amazing to be able to see the Lord doing so many miracles through Ella!

Jen said...

Sweet Ella! We love seeing her pictures!

Continuing to pray for your family!

All our love, The Snider Family

kroddel said...

Chris, you are such a beautiful writer! I love your heart and love to hear your inner most thoughts. Your words inspire me to stay focused on what's important; especially when or if I'm distracted by wordly things. Ella is as sweet as ever and the pictures of her and you together warm my heart, well actually, EVERY picture of her warms my heart, but there's nothing like seeing a precious life wrapped in her mother's arms--a mother who lives to love and cherish her children. I continue to pray, pray, pray for Ella and every piece of good news is so refreshing and comforting. Jesus, may you continue to keep Ella strong and hold her sweet little hand. She is such an amazing fighter and I am so incredibly grateful for her progress. What an amazing blessing she is to Chris & Erik. Please hold them all close and continue to do your great work! I love you both so much...kiss Ella for me!


Chelle said...

Smiling over the your twice daily dates with her. And Christa seariously gleaning so much from your beautiful heart and perspective in all of this and I am asking that Jesus would continue change my heart...I cannot even begin to tell you how deeply God has used Ella to soften + strech our hearts. She is too sweet for words.

cheryl said...

Such a precious baby girl! I am so glad to hear that she has stabilized and you all are getting to hold her again. Prayers continue for all of you.

Cheryl Dobson

Brenna said...

I just wanted to leave a note and say that my family, too, is praying for Ella and your family. I added your Ella button to my blog from a friend's friend. She is so sweet and precious. I love your reflections today on burdens vs. blessings... so true.
God bless!

bella_luna06 said...

Sigh... I love you Christa!

stephanie said...

Hey you guys! We just can't stop looking at the pictures and reading Ella's blog. We wish we could see you in person and give you big hugs! Peyton says, "I want to see baby Ella! I want to see Aydan and Lijah!" I love that you have a picture of you and Erik in Ella's bed so she can see you all the time! I wish I would have thought of that when Peyton was in the hospital. I feel like I know so many of the feelings you are having because of what we went through with Peyton. I remember never feeling at ease...like I was holding my breath and hoping until the day we finally brought her home...then I exhaled. I read about your faith and understanding and I know that God is looking over you too, as well as Ella. I am so thankful for that and for you...my dear friends.
Bunches of Love and Hugs,

Rachel said...

Christa - I found your story from a link on my best friends page who lives in Spokane. Even though we have never met, I so dearly wish that i could help your sweet family out in some way. Unfortunatly, Alaska is a bit far away for that! You are in my prayers, and your baby girl is so beautiful. Blessings to you and your family during this time~

Diana said...

Christa and Mark, I was checking the site and wanted you to know that I am still praying for your family. Little Ella is an amazing little girl and I pray that she is doing well. You guys are so blessed with your family and the journey you are on and the way our Lord is using your journey to reach and speak to us all. You have a beautiful family and there is so much love that just shines through.

Anonymous said...

It is so incredible what these things teach us. How to count our blessings. I am grateful our whole family. We have surely been blessed.

I love you and am proud of your strength. And extremely proud to be your brother.


Blomgrens said...

Thank you for the challenge of realizing... things that are a "burden" really are a privilege to us! Praise God for Ella and what she is teaching us.