Archive for December, 2011

Update 12/21/2011, Elizabeth is home from the hospital

Posted by on Wednesday, 21 December, 2011

Elizabeth arrived home from Phoenix Children’s Hospital on Dec 20th…which is exactly 5 months from when she was born.

Her surgery was successful and the recovery was amazing. While we had heard recovery time in the hospital would take 2-3 weeks, she was home only 1 week after her open heart surgery.

We are all so thrilled that she is home. God is so good—the last night of her hospital stay, a new nurse was on duty. This nurse has a young son who has Down Syndrome and she shared her experiences about her son and their struggles and victories….this was very helpful for us and also gave us some insight into raising Elizabeth. This nurse is a Christian and actually lives close to us and we have some of the same case workers and therapists. Heidie was able to get her contact information, and will be able to stay in touch with her. God does know exactly what we need.

What a wonderful gift that our peanut will be home and the family can be together this Christmas. Thank you all sooooo much for your prayers and support for us—I really can’t express enough my gratitude for standing with us during her surgery and hospital recovery.


Lockley & Heidie
Rebecca, Rose, Kaitlyn & Elizabeth

Update 12/14/2011, Elizabeth’s Heart Surgery is complete

Posted by on Wednesday, 14 December, 2011

Thank You to everyone who has been praying and supporting Elizabeth and our family during the open heart surgery. Thank You God for Your loving kindness and faithfulness to Elizabeth and our family.

Please continue to pray for a speedy recovery, we would love to have Elizabeth home in time for Christmas.

Day 1 – Surgery

The open heart surgery went well. It took about 3.5 hours for the surgery and she was in her recovery room around 2pm. Just before they took her to the surgery room, I took a little video of Elizabeth laying on the hospital bed. That video is shown here:

As the surgery went on, the nurses would come out and give us updates. Each time they would come out, they would say it is going as expected. The first time they came out, it was a super anxious time, as you can imagine. But it was always good news. The day had started off rainy and it did rain for most of the day. We were on the fourth floor of the hospital and sometime in the morning, it cleared some and there was some sunshine—-I looked out the window and saw a rainbow….it made me think of God’s promises and faithfulness, I that in itself was extremely comforting to me.

After surgery was complete we spoke to the surgeon and he was very calm and clinical, saying it went great, and he was very pleased with it. About 2 hours after that, we were able to go into the recovery room and see Elizabeth. As you can imagine, there were tubes everywhere and she looked very drugged up—which she was.

Day 2 – Recovery

Recovery is going well too. On Wednesday morning they were able to remove a breathing tube they had down her nose/throat…she seemed much more relaxed after getting that out. At around 1pm I was able to feed her a bottle of pedialite, her first meal through a bottle since the surgery. That was pretty sweet, she was eager to drink and glupped it down pretty quick.

At about 4pm, Heidie got to hold her and feed her some formula. She was very sweet and peaceful during her feeding. Initially, the doctors said we would not be able to hold her until day three, so she is ahead of schedule. Our other girls have been able to see Elizabeth (both Tuesday and Wednesday), they have missed a couple days of school so far in their support of their sister.

Day 3 – Recovery

Today Heidie was doing most of the nursing, as today’s nurse was not as effective as others we have had ūüôĀ

Heidie is now able to to hold her and feed her (bottle). They have take most of the tubes and wires out of her. They are working on getting her lungs to clear up. She has treatments every 4 hours to break up the yucky stuff in her lungs. The treatment helps her cough and work out that stuff so it gets out.

Day 4 – Recovery

Today has been a tough day. She has an infection and is running a fever now. They have had to put back some of the tubes that were taken out. She has an IV again. We had started to feed her some formula in a bottle and Heidie has now been able to hold her. Now, though she is back on IV and not getting fed formula.

It is likely that the infection is making it difficult for her to breath, so she was hooked up again to the larger oxygen tank.

Current Prayer Needs

Please pray for the following:

  • her infection to be gone
  • her lungs to be cleared
  • her pain to be reduced



I will write more details to this same blog post as we go through this. I purposefully haven’t included many pictures just yet, because most don’t flatter my little girl. Please be patient, because soon enough she will be ooohhing and ahhhhhhinng everyone again with her stellar sweetness.


Lockley & Heidie
Rebecca, Rose, Kaitlyn, and Elizabeth

the missing toe – by Kaitlyn

Posted by on Thursday, 8 December, 2011

Hello everyone. Tuesday was an exciting day at our house. We had an accident in the kitchen that has us scurrying around. Especially Kaitlyn and Heidie.

We have this large (and heavy) wooden cutting board, and soup was being made in the kitchen. Kaitlyn was helping mom to cut up some vegetables for the soup. As Heidie and Kaitlyn were working together in the kitchen that cutting board fell and hit directly on Kaitlyn’s toe (right foot, second toe). ¬†It was extremely painful so Kaitlyn was screaming and crying.

Heidie took her to emergency, where they gave her 2 shots with the biggest needle in the universe—that may have been the maximum pain level felt from this whole ordeal. Well the doctor called it a partial amputation, so they put it back together as best as they could. 10 stitches later and minus her toe-nail, they made their way home. Kaitlyn is on crutches for a while and the toe-nail will take about 6 months to grow back. ¬†It is doubtful that she will be playing soccer this season, and we will need to find her some shoes that can protect that toe.


Here are a couple of pictures below. One is of the toe and the other is Kaitlyn playing with a blown up glove—waiting in the hospital always seems like it takes too long, so she is passing the time—Opa (Heidie’s father, David Wright) had blown the glove up and Kaitlyn provided the decoration.

Update 12/07/2011, Elizabeth — Heart Surgery is scheduled for Dec 13th

Posted by on Wednesday, 7 December, 2011

We have exciting news. ¬†Elizabeth’s heart surgery is scheduled for Tuesday Dec 13th, 2011 @ 7:30am. This was a surprise to us that she is able to have the surgery this soon. We were thinking more along the lines of middle to late January. ¬†She is doing very well and is well over 10 lbs now. ¬†The surgery is sooner because Elizabeth has been doing so well, not because something is wrong. ¬†The goal was to get her ready for surgery–and a 4-6 month time frame was given as the likely target time for her to have the surgery. ¬†She has progressed well and is big enough and strong enough now for the surgery. The open heart surgery is to fix the wall between the sides of the heart, as it is not formed properly, as well as fixing the valves inside the heart.

We have had some flu going through the family for the last several weeks, but it does look like we are out of the woods. Elizabeth has had a few rough days, but has seemed to bounce back quickly from that. The biggest thing right now for the surgery is that she must be¬†healthy¬†and not get the flu or any other sickness—otherwise they can’t perform the heart surgery that she needs.

Our plan is for our family (all the girls included) to visit the Phoenix Children’s Hospital this Friday and tour the facilities and go over the procedure as well as get an understanding of the recovering process while in the hospital. We are expecting her to be in the hospital for 2-3 weeks after the surgery, and we are hoping she will be home for Christmas! As part of the Friday tour and talk with the Doctors, our girls have been thinking about this process and are writing down questions that they have and they will ask the Doctors and staff those questions. ¬†Phoenix Children’s Hospital is known for it’s family environment and we are glad they will allow the girls to ask the Doctors their questions and get answers.

The Monday before surgery, we will go to the hospital for tests—to make sure Elizabeth is healthy enough for the heart surgery. If all goes as planned, then Tuesday morning we will go in early and prep for her 7:30am surgery time.

Can you please pray for us in these areas:

  • Elizabeth to remain healthy and strong and not to catch the flu or cold
  • for complete healing of Elizabeth’s heart
  • for Doctor’s and medical staff to be used by God and also changed by Him in this process
  • for a quick recovery time in the hospital and for Elizabeth to be back at home before Christmas
  • for our other daughters, Rebecca (age 12), Rose and Kaitlyn (age 9) to be able to handle this transition time of surgery along with the lengthy hospital recovery time

I wanted to include some updated pictures and video.

Short video featuring Heidie and Elizabeth, Kaitlyn is recording. Elizabeth is giggling and then waving to her fans, don’t miss it! (I noticed sometimes the video below looks blank, if so, reloading/refreshing this page seems to fix it)


Some recent pictures. Elizabeth is on the prowl / Rose and Lizzie sharing a moment / Elizabeth: deer in the headlights look (or maybe in her jug look)!


Please do share this page with others that you know that would join with us in prayer. You can share this page by clicking the links below to share on Facebook or Twitter.

Thank you so much for your support in prayer for Elizabeth and our whole family during this time.


Lockley & Heidie Gentes