Monday, November 15, 2010

Long Awaited Update! Chloe Grows and Grows!

Nov. 14th, 2010

"Bloom where you are planted." Tiny, tiny stitches spell this out for me in a framed piece of embroidery given to me by my mother when I left for college so many years ago. It has traveled with me to many a home, been put upon many a wall! Unpacking after this latest move, upon finding it, it struck me that this was now Chloe' motto. No one, absolutely no one expected the seriousness of Chloe's medical issues on the day that she arrived at Children's Hospital in Denver. Each day for months brought obstacle after obstacle, question after question, stress after stress. The adults who made up her world prayed, cried, sighed, paced, lost sleep, prayed some more and asked others to do the same. Chloe? Chloe just laid back and continuously figured out how to outfox the the most dire predictions, how to make bad mean good- refusing all negative possible outcomes and affirming only the positive paths. In other words, she 'bloomed where she was planted". We watched in awe as she moved through the pain, the fear, the medical impossibilities and we rejoiced with you!

At seven months old, one month before Thanksgiving, Chloe was allowed to go home. The excitement built for weeks, there was also some anxiety, it was a big job to take on the care at home. Many modalities were put into place to help but Chloe's parents, Jennie and Lance...they knew that the responsibilities were theirs. Funny thing though, after sitting at her bedside for so many months, no one knew this baby better than her mommy and daddy. So many times they both were telling doctors what ended up being the best course to follow. The family just wanted to take their baby HOME! So, who embraces the home life more that any other? Well Chloe, of course. Chloe decides that after FINALLY being given the opportunity to show what she could do outside the confines of the hospital that she just wouldn't waste a minute! So many truly miraculous things have happened to this little Warrior Princess since her big break out! If you have followed this story for any length of time, you know some truly miraculous moments that I shared as they were happening! Trials for increased time off of the life supporting ventilator, first attempt at rolling and crawling, playing, making of sounds, all the special ways that Chloe has shown love to each of us. Jennie and Lance have included her in each activity that 'normal' babies would be trying out as they got a bit older, her first strolls in the stroller, playing on the lawn, going to the park, Christmas, snow, Halloween...all have been experienced and enjoyed by our little angel and encouraged by her very courageous parents. Every moment has not been delightful of course, as Chloe experienced a serious spinal surgery in the early summer and had a couple of very serious issues with breathing that undid us this summer in an extremely emotional manner as we realized how fragile she still can be!

I have been somewhat remiss the past two months in reporting all of the goodies, as I have moved and put energies elsewhere, I realize there are MANY momentous moments to share at this point. As Chloe grows, language is such an important and imperative issue to be dealt with, and her hearing loss plays a large part in this development. It has been determined that even though her 'cosmetic' ears are lacking, the actual inner and middle ear did develop more that expected. Chloe's hearing loss is not as severe as it could be, and the hearing aids are allowing her to hear more than we had hoped! Delightfully, we watch as Chloe picks up and understands the signs that are being taught and is actually making up some of her own now! They are the cutest thing you have ever seen! She is SO bright and is quite the little thinker! Jennie posted a picture a while back of Chloe placing her head directly on Lance's guitar in order to better hear it. She is figuring out a new method all by herself! Having four and six year old siblings who each adore and spoil her doesn't hurt! She has a lot of keeping up to do! This little Warrior would amaze you at every turn, just as she continues to do with all who love her here! The very BEST news that I have to report is that Chloe has totally disregarded doctors predictions and has very quickly discarded the need for the ventilator to breathe for her a MAJORITY of her time in the day. She is put on it when napping and does still remain attached to the machine at night when sleeping, but her lungs have matured and she is most often breathing on her own! When Chloe started making moves toward crawling, it was obvious just how difficult that could get. The tubing from the machine is not very long, and just motivating a short way in the living room had to be monitored very closely! NOW, without being attached, she is able to crawl around the house untethered, just like any other curious baby! She is attempting to walk, and is very proud to show just how long she can independently stand! She loves playing with her 'baby', stands for long periods of time at the Lego table crafting her innovations, pulls our hair, grabs our glasses, cruises in her walker, laughs, enjoys the mischief that is intrinsically a part of being not quite 2 years old! Such a delightful baby, hugs are warm and inviting and kisses are given by touching foreheads. ( Chloe's own invention!)

So, I cannot think of another place where "Bloom Where You Are Planted" is more appropriate. God placed Chloe in the care of loving, educated parents. They are doing their part to give her every opportunity to move forward. Chloe has taken on the challenge of doing the blooming...wherever she may be. In this scenario, she is the entire flower garden and her beauty is a prize winning blue ribbon every day of the week!

Thanks to everyone for being here on a daily basis, for sending love and encouragement through many different forms at any given time! Now, I charge you with helping me to raise the member number in this group! You will be blessed just by dropping by from time to time! God's love and blessings to all!

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