Stolen Secrets and Spoiled Surprises
Dave and I have been holding on to a secret. A big one. A secret so big that we couldn't wait to share, but we were forcing ourselves not to in order to pull of the surprise. My heart had been set on it, but it is not to be. Today's events stole our secret and spoiled our surprise. Disappointments come and go in this life. Some are bigger and harder to swallow than others, but in the end I usually learn something from them. I'm counting on this one to hold an important lesson for me. I just haven't had time to figure it out. When I look back over the larger disappointments in my life something good and beautiful eventually comes around. So although my heart hurts over the loss of a privilege that had been granted, I secretly wonder what lay in store just around the corner. It could be something wonderful.
One of the results of our meeting on Friday was that we had been granted the opportunity to slip out of Omaha on a 3 day pass. A pass that had to be one of the biggest and best secrets I have ever held on to. A pass that was going to be the surprise of a lifetime for our family on Thanksgiving day when Dave, Ash and I rang the doorbell and joined our family for the first holiday in 3 years. Ashley's first family holiday ever. The joy and anticipation I have been holding in my heart for the last few days has kept me awake at night as we planned our surprise. I was so looking forward to the fellowship, the memory making, the photo opportunities, the late night games of sequence, the fun of Christmas shopping with my sisters, and the happiness on every one's hearts. It is not to be. We will not be secretly traveling all through the night in order to arrive at my sister's on Thanksgiving day, and there will be no surprise.
As I sit and rock this precious little girl all snuggled up on my chest in her flannel night gown I still am thankful. My eyes sting with tears because I truly am disappointed, but my heart swells because she is here with us. She is the sweetest thing I have ever loved, and although the judge was correct when she warned us to prepare to have broken hearts as we left the courthouse that day we have never felt more blessed. How could she have known that loving Ashley would not only be the biggest heartache of our lives, but the biggest blessing as well. She had no idea how God had smiled on us that day.
Ash is still struggling as we try and use diuretics to pull the fluid off her chest. She is sating in the low 90's with the help of oxygen and has managed to fight off the ventilator so far. Her blood gases are beautiful and at this point it looks as though she is only fighting fluid that has shifted out of her vessels and into her lungs and tissues. We have not identified any source of infection and she has not spiked a temperature. The fluid balance is one of the trickiest parts of transplant. Ashley's has never been that stable and it seems as though it will be the monster we fight over and over again. She is so sensitive and can easily slip into respiratory distress in just a matter of hours once she begins to shift. This how she woke up today and this is why we now sit in the PICU. I hope it is worked out quickly and I hope she will be allowed to begin feeds again tomorrow.
Thanksgiving day will prove to be about the same as last year. Dave and I will sit in the PICU taking turns rocking our baby. The only difference will be that she will not be saying, "My mama" over and over again for our camera. Oh, how I miss her sweet, sweet voice.
She is resting now and I sit and stare. I had wanted a low key day of folding laundry and listening to Christmas carols. Silly me. I should have known that nothing goes according to my plans. God is still God and He is still the One in control. I don't know why we are where we are, but He does and I have no choice but to accept it. Goodnight my friends. I hope your holiday will be full of fun, fellowship and family. There is nothing like it and I really, really miss it. Thanks for praying for Ash today. Trish