Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Day -8

In an earlier post, we described the transplant timeline. Today is Day -8 on the transplant timeline. The days before transplant are the negative days. Transplant is Day 0, and then the first 100+ days after transplant are counted.  We are going to follow this timeline as we post.

The past 24 hours here have been filled with answered prayers.  We are counting our blessings.

Overall, we had a good night.
Radiation went well.
We were able to get plenty of rest after radiation.
Elena is eating well and getting all of her jobs done.
We walked laps twice with our friends, Heather and Sarah.
The staff here is amazing.

Many praises and things to be thankful for!

After a 5:00 am wake-up call, we walked underground to Winship.  Thank you to those of you who told us you were up "walking with us in prayer".  Even in the tunnel, we knew we weren't alone!

 On our long walk this morning.
We will do it again at 7:15 tonight.

 Elena in place ready to go.
After about 15 minutes on this side, she rolls over
and then does another 15 minutes on the other side.

 The sign on the door to the treatment room.
The door is about three feet thick.

 When we returned from radiation,
this was the view from the little window
in our hospital room.
God's love shining brightly.

Currently, Elena is receiving IV fluids and another IV medication, an anti-coagulant. This medication is being used as a precaution to help keep Elena's blood thin and flowing since Elena is considered high risk for veno-occlusive disease (VOD) of the liver.  She had this disease in April of 2010 and her liver appears irritated heading into transplant. They are also giving her two oral medications to help strengthen her liver. Please pray that these meds will do their job and that Elena will NOT get VOD.

One wonderful part of our day was meeting all of the members of Elena's medical team. Each staff member has been friendly, positive, and upbeat.  They are all so very knowledgeable in their area of expertise and have taken the time to clearly explain things.

Today, between the hours of 12:00 and 5:00 pm, we met two doctors, the nurse practitioner, the nutritionist, the respiratory therapist, the physical therapist, the school teacher, and the child life specialist.  It has been a little busy around here this afternoon!

We have also been blessed with two wonderful nurses.  Each one has taken their time to get to know Elena and listen to her.  There are genuinely interested in her as a person and not only as a patient. 

Before going into radiation today, Maggie, our night nurse, asked Elena what was one thing she was thankful for.  Elena was already scared and nervous about radiation today. She quickly responded that she was thankful that both of us could be with her for her first radiation session. Maggie wanted to make sure Elena knew that no matter what is going on, you always have something to be thankful for.  Later in the morning, she left a note for Elena . Part of it said  "Cultivating gratitude for what is and having faith in what's to come...that is what joy is all about. Choose joy every single day and you will be home before you know it."

Praying that tonight, you have something to be thankful for and that you choose joy.
We are!

In Him,
The Tates

"Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning, great is your faithfulness."
Lamentations 3:22-23


  1. My little champion! Way to go with your first radiation. At least the bed looks comfortable! Little things to be thankful for. Love ya, Rainey

  2. Glad to hear day -8 went well! Full of activity around there. So thankful to hear you're surrounded by a wonderful staff that is going to take great care of you!

  3. I've been on the train of prayers for you, Elena, but it sounds to me like you are all in the right place for the good things to come.

  4. WE LOVE YOU ELENA!!!!! Glad today was a good day and we will be following closely and praying always!!!

    Love The Forehands!!

  5. 107 more to go... Seems like a lot, but you'll be finishing up close to my birthday and just in time for christmas. Godspeed. Uncle Wayne

  6. Praying for you Elena. We wish everyone, young and old, could see how strong and brave you are!
    Can you give nurse Maggie a hug from us? We know in our hearts that God has put her into your life to help you on this journey. We loved her inspiring and encouraging words!
    Thinking of you this morning as you start day -7!
    Tom, Dawn, Hannah, Peter, Jack, Mary and Katie

  7. Elena, You are such an amazing girl!! The Lett family is keeping up with your posts and praying for you and your awesome family daily.
    We Love You!!!!

  8. You all make me cry with your faithfulness and postive outlook!

    Sending up prayers and sending over hugs!


  9. Praying and thinking of all of you throughout these days. LOVE you night nurse Maggie and note she left.
    WE LOVE YOU!!! Continuing to pray everyday for all of you and that your light shines bright through this challenge. Can't wait to celebrate day 1,000+!!!
    Joshua 1:9
    Eric, Melissa, Sam, Ben, Cody, Hoover, Shiraz, Shell-bee, Skitter, the 8 fish and 2 frogs in the pond...