Thursday, July 28, 2011

4 transplants in 5!!!

I wish everybody could hang out with Abby for just a few minutes.  You would be surprised at how great she is doing, you would be able to see what I get to see every single day!   She looks just like she did before her heart, if not better.....her cheeks are actually pink! She's laughing and feeling good almost all of the time, it is the greatest sight.  It's still just surreal to think that she has a different heart beating inside of her now, it's an awesome thing to think about.  I think about it every single day so that I remember the miracle we're living.

We started out the day yesterday with Kathy Aiken filming for The Mormon Times TV show.  Abby did fact, better than ever.  The story will run a week from Sunday, on August 7, at 10:00 on KSL.   It should be excellent, Abby talked about some great experiences she's had through all of this.  I think it will top all of her news stories, she just sounded so....real.  I can't wait to see it, it should be inspiring.  Abby is very natural in front of the camera, it's fun to see.

Today we spent the day at the cardiology clinic.  They took blood, did a chest xray, an ekg, and an echo.  Then the docs looked at all the results and examined Abby.  They were a little concerned about an extra little heartbeat they could hear sometimes, so they hooked her up to what's called a holter monitor.  She's got 3 wires hooked up to her chest and she carries around a little device that monitors her heart rhythm.  She just has to keep it for 24 hours.  They don't think this a problem with the heart, but maybe a med adjustment problem.  We'll find out more next week.  I'm nervous the whole time they're examining Abby, I just hold my breath until they tell me she's doing fine.  I know I'll relax a little more as time goes on, but this whole new heart thing is still pretty scary to me. The lab had a hard time finding somewhere to poke Abby again today too, that's the worst.  She's got so much scar tissue and bruising that it's hard for them, it took them 2 pokes today.  Abby said it doesn't bother her anymore, she doesn't even flinch when they stick the needle in, she still loves to watch it too....crazy kid!  Tuesday we go back for another cath and biopsy, they'll be weekly for about a month, then they space out a little more as time goes on.  Hopefully she'll just continue to get stronger and stronger with her new heart, I know she will, it's going to be like the rest of this journey......just perfect. 

I can't remember if I talked about how there were 4 heart transplants at Primary Children's in a 5-week period, but we met the 4th one today.  There's Abby, another 11-year-old girl soccer player that just turned 12 a couple of weeks ago, a 13-year-old girl that's a dancer and gymnast, and today we met the 4th heart recipient.  You won't believe it, but it's a boy from Idaho that's 15-years-old.  Nice, nice fact, all of these kids are extremely great kids.  This happened to them for a reason.  4 kids that all needed new hearts within a 5-week period, and they all got them in time and are doing well that is a miracle too!!!  I love meeting these families and spending some time talking to them, we can relate to each other and validate what we're going through.  I'm so grateful that we all got to go through this together, what a great thing.  We will keep a close connection with these other families forever. 

We're still working hard at keeping Abby away from germs.  We don't go anywhere, except PCMC.  We are going to go to a drive-in movie this week because Abby wants to see Harry Potter so bad.  We're both looking forward to that.  We're also going to start taking trips up the canyon for picnics and to get outside.  But, that's about it.  We want to go home so bad that we aren't going to risk getting her sick.  So once again, if you're sick, please wait and visit another time; Or if you've been around other sick people, you just might not know it yet, but you could have it too, it's just not showing yet. Please work with us with this, so we can get back to St.  I'm aiming for October 15th, I don't where that date came from, but it's my new goal date.  We'll still have to make frequent trips here, maybe even weekly, but it's worth it to be home as a family again.   Brock and Britt are on their way here right now, woohoo! It's time for some family time.  Brock will have to go back on Sunday so he can be back for football, but I think Britt will hang out with us for a little while.  I have planned a trip down to St. George, just me, on August 10th and 11th, if everything is still going well.  My parents will stay with Abby while I go to a couple of meetings for school....I just can't stay away anymore, I need to be a part of the beginning of the school year.  Even if it is just for 2 days, and I'll be at work, I still can't will be the first normal things I've done in 2 1/2 months.  I hope I won't have hard time leaving Abby for a couple of days, she probably needs a break from me anyway.

Things here are good, Abby feels good, her heart works well and she's happy.......and that's what's important.  We are so grateful for all of you.  Thank you to everyone that's expressed to me how the blog and Abby have changed their lives and inspired them in some way, it makes all of this more worth it!!


  1. Really, THANK YOU for sharing through this blog! I am so, so happy that Abby is feeling good…what an amazing girl! I also think it is great that you have met other people who have (or are) going through the same experience; there's nothing better than support!

  2. Oh im sooo glad Abby is doing so well. My oldest son Brayden is 12 and i cant even image the stress and worry you are going through. I had to laugh a few posts ago when you said Abby asked the doctors when she can RUN. When i say i laughed i also have to admit i was bawling at the same time. Brayd is a runner and on the 6th of August is running another 5k. He will be wearing his "team Doman" shirt. We will be thinking of Abby and your family and praying that you can return soon to St George :)

  3. Thank you so much for the update. You don't know me but I feel like you are all my best friends! I have followed your blog from the beginning and want to tell you how grateful I am for you all and your example. It has reminded me to be grateful for everything, hug my kids and be happy that we are all together.
    Thank you for showing the good and the bad times. Michelle you are a really good writer and should do more of it.
    I so Happy that things are going well and hopefully meet you someday. We will be happy to have in the STG again soon

  4. Michelle, you are such a strong mama:) One of my 7 year old twins has heart problems. She had her first open heart surgery at 11 months old. It's funny how people you never knew suddenly become a friend or feel like a friend just from being a "heart mom" I love checking abbys blog daily to see the latest. So glad things are going so well. My daughter has had to wear the holter monitor a few times too. Abby you are such a fighter " you go girl"
    You are in our prayers, The Dance Family