Posted (Tina) in All Posts on August-20-2007

We arrived this morning at 6:30am EST to spend some time with Ella before surgery.

Apparently, she had a rough night. She was awake and restless, which made her stats drop significantly. The staff was not as successful in calming her down, so they had to use the paralytic medicine.

By the time we showed up, she had just started to calm down and was sleeping. We did not want to interrupt her and sat to the side just holding our breath and staring over at our little miracle. In between, we were praying, surrendering our little girl over to His care, asking for His peace and proclaiming His promises.

It is 8:15am EST and we just shook hands with Dr. Kays as he kicked us out of her room! He walked in fresh with a smile and said, “Okay, we are ready!” He took the cover from her eyes and shook her on her chest to greet her. Then, he told us to give her a kiss because “it was time”.

They are prepping and sterilizing her room for surgery. It is amazing that they perform the surgery right in her room. We are told that surgery will take anywhere from 2-4 hours, depending on how it goes and what he encounters during the surgery.

Thanks so much for your support and prayers as we continue on this journey with Ella. All of you are very special and dear to our hearts.

Romans 15:13 – “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

UPDATE (9:45am EST): Michelle came out to let us know that Dr. Kays just made the first incision. Lord Jesus, we pray your hands upon Dr. Kays.

UPDATE (12:15pm EST): We were just told that Dr. Kays is finishing up and will be out shortly to give us an update.

UPDATE (12:20pm EST): Dr. Kays just came out for a quick update. Thankfully, Ella remained stable throughout the entire procedure. The surgery itself went well. He had to run to another obligation, but said that he will fill us in on the details later. We should be able to see her shortly.

UPDATE (4:00pm EST): We’re still waiting to speak to Dr. Kays about the details. We hope to speak to him in the next couple hours.

Ella continues to do ok. Her O2 levels are great, but her cO2 gas has been high so they’ve been working to reduce it. Her blood pressure is down a bit too, but they’re giving her some fluids to bring it up.

You wouldn’t know how well she’s doing by looking at her though. When Tina and I first saw her it was pretty tough. With her current state of sedation and that Frankenstein-esque scar on her side you wouldn’t think she would be alive. Only the stats on the machine confirm otherwise.

We’ll update again after speaking to Dr. Kays, or if her condition changes. Thanks to all of you for your faithfulness in prayer.

Williamsburg on August 20th, 2007 at 6:07 am #

Think you know how much it means to us that you take the time and make the effort to keep us all updated and in this with you – we’re standing with you in love and prayer today. Kiss each other for us and hang on tight. We love you. XOXOXO

Joan Odell on August 20th, 2007 at 6:21 am #

With all of you today in prayer and thought. The Lord is with all of you and hears all our prayers, knows Ella’s needs and they will be supplied. Will check back later – love, prayers and hugs. Steve and Joan.

Fran Jarrett on August 20th, 2007 at 6:24 am #

Love you. The Lord is with Sweet Ella and with you,as well as Dr. Kays. You have chosen the best in Dr. Kays for your little girl.
We all are with you.

Lisa (Ms. Texas) on August 20th, 2007 at 6:26 am #

Praying here in Texas! I am so excited for all of you! I know that Dr Kays will be guided by our Lord and that Ella will recover without any complications! Hang TOUGH! Love you all!

Kim on August 20th, 2007 at 6:38 am #

God Bless you, Ella! Hang tough!

I am SO impressed with strength and confidence of your faith in God as you watch over your little girl. I am praying for peace and an abundance of strength for you both as you pray over your little girl.


Eusey Family on August 20th, 2007 at 7:00 am #

Sweet Ella we are with you today and are praying for you and the team working with you. Go Ella! We love you.


Rick, Shannon, Megan, Richard, Claire and Ryan.

Laura Marold on August 20th, 2007 at 7:08 am #

Sending positive thoughts and prayers your way for surgery and post-op. Dr. Kays sounds ready and confident. The staff is prepared. Everything leading up to the surgery has been planned. You have moved mountains to obtain the very best for your baby girl. You have done EVERYTHING possible to give her the best chance. I’m praying for good health and happiness for all three of you. Love, Peace, Faith, and Hope.

Char Snyder Jordan on August 20th, 2007 at 7:21 am #

May God hold you in his loving arms dear baby Ella. May your parents be given strength and love this special day. We pray for your return to us in the way God would have it. Help us all to sustain HIS will and love this very day. You have gone the second mile with your precious daughter. We love you and have faith that all will be well. LOVE, Aunt Char and Jim

The Laz Fam! on August 20th, 2007 at 7:33 am #

Man, if it’s possible to pray while sleeping, I really think I was doing that all night… We love you so much and wish we could be with you while you wait. If today is the day that Ella is at her weakest, then God is at His strongest.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in all things, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil 4:6-7)

Eli Brown on August 20th, 2007 at 7:41 am #

I pray that the Lord will hold on tight to all three of you today, to give you strength and peace that He can only give. As for me, I’m all nerves.

Joel Snyder on August 20th, 2007 at 7:49 am #

Tina and Josh, Just got home from work and have been praying for Ella you two and Dr. Kays and staff. I am with you in spirit and prayer. Go Ella this is your day. Love, Grandpa

Kelli Billman on August 20th, 2007 at 7:57 am #


Heidi on August 20th, 2007 at 8:02 am #

You don’t know me… but I found your story through my friend Crystal.

I just wanted you all to know that my family is praying for your precious little Ella right now…

Stef on August 20th, 2007 at 8:09 am #

We’re praying for you today as always. We pray for Dr. Kays and his team as well. “Don’t be afraid for I am with you. Do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you. I will help you. I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.” Isaiah 41:10
Love you guys

Grandma West on August 20th, 2007 at 8:12 am #

Dearest Josh , Tina and Baby Ella We are all praying for you all here in the Cook and West Family and Friends. Jesus Has his hand on Dr. Kays hands
and Ellas little body.Thank you both for keeping us informed I pray the Holy Spirit wraps all of you in his peace and love, in Jesus name. AMEN!
Love Grandma

Kristen on August 20th, 2007 at 8:13 am #

Holy Father, You are the great physician. . . guide Dr. Kays hands. . . hold Ella in your hands and allow the surgery to be a wild success!!! Bless these parents with your comfort and peace.

Brendan on August 20th, 2007 at 8:54 am #

I’m praying for you and for God’s hand upon Dr. Kays.
Go GOD Go!!

Jenny Talbott on August 20th, 2007 at 9:13 am #

It’s all going to be okay… it’s all going to be okay… it’s all going to be okay…

Nicole on August 20th, 2007 at 9:25 am #

Ella came from very strong parents. She’s gonna pull through.

Our prayers are with you.

Cliff, Diane and Sonic on August 20th, 2007 at 9:33 am #

Our prayers and thoughts are with you more than ever. Stay strong .. ALL 3 OF YOU !!

Shannon on August 20th, 2007 at 9:34 am #

Bless the Lord, bless Dr. Kays and team, bless all the friends and family that are praying. I feel like I just took my first breath today. We were waiting axiously. Please give Ella a big smooch on the head from me.

Auntie Shannon

Heidi Ham on August 20th, 2007 at 9:38 am #

Precious Angel – Lord continue to bless this family with your comfort and healing. Ella be calm and relax and heal – Josh and Tina my thoughts and prayers are with you. Can’t wait to hear the details. So glad the initial news is good. Love and kisses to all. Heidi, Paul and Alyssa

Lesli Richards on August 20th, 2007 at 9:43 am #

Thank you, sweet Jesus, for pouring out your mercy on this family today. Please heal her little body and protect her from infection. Grow those lungs quickly, so that she can be in her mommy’s arms as soon as possible. Thank you Lord, for doing what others called impossible.

Katy Nilsson on August 20th, 2007 at 9:47 am #

My prayers are with you and I am so happy that Ella was stable during the surgery. The little blessings and steps forward are what matter the most.

Cristy Overholtzer on August 20th, 2007 at 9:49 am #

All of my prayers are with Ella and you today!!!!

Daphne Hollowbush on August 20th, 2007 at 9:55 am #

Tina & Josh: Praise God for a successful surgery. Your are such a witness of Christian faith. It is a real inspiration reading this site daily. We continue to pray for you and Ella.
Daphne & Ron

Lori Vodnik on August 20th, 2007 at 9:59 am #

Such great news! We will continue to pray for Ella’s strength and yours as well.

Phyllis Sumpter on August 20th, 2007 at 10:22 am #

Praise God for a successful surgery. So many here in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area are praying for precious little Ella and for you, Josh and Tina. You will all continue in our prayers until she is given an “all clear.” God Bless you during this time.

Fran Jarrett on August 20th, 2007 at 10:26 am #

Thank you Lord! Appreciate so much the update and hearing the wonderful news on Ella. Will continue prayers for Ella to remain strong. Much love to you all. Fran

Joan Odell on August 20th, 2007 at 10:27 am #

Praise God!!! What incredibly happy news – Keep us updated as you can!!! Prayers continue!! Steve and Joan

Dawn Franck on August 20th, 2007 at 11:31 am #

Tina and Josh, even though I can’t be there waiting for news with you guys, please know that I am thinking of you and checking on you guys as often as possible today (as always) I am so happy to hear that the initial news is good and that she made it through surgery! You are so lucky to have so many loving friends and family members to follow you through this journey. We are all praying for you and looking forward to meeting your little miracle 🙂 Take care and keep us posted. Dawn

Ani on August 20th, 2007 at 12:30 pm #

I love all three of you and you are always in my prayers.

The Roberts Family on August 20th, 2007 at 12:46 pm #

Praise the Lord!

Christina DuHart on August 20th, 2007 at 12:52 pm #

I just read your update that the surgery went well. I got chills. I am so Happy. =-) Give your baby girl a kiss from all of us. I know it has been a crazy 3 weeks, now you will have many crazy but good years ahead. Lot of love Christina

Mike & Debi Van Eps on August 20th, 2007 at 1:14 pm #

Dear Josh and Tina: We have been checking all day and have been encourged each time as the reports have been positive. God has blessed you with not only with a wonderful daughter, but the experience very few of us get of totally depending on the Lord daily. We say it a lot but to see and hear you practicing it everyday brings tears of joy in knowing the goodness of God, especially during the most difficult times of life. Your dear Ella will remain in our prayers as will the two of you. God bless Mike and Debi

Joan Odell on August 20th, 2007 at 1:23 pm #

I do understand and know how hard and painful it is to see her like this but try to focus on the fact that this is what had to happen to make her well. It is a temporary thing and will pass – she is doing so incredibly well so hold tight to His promises and feel his the strength of His love as He holds you up. Loving hugs and prayers – Joan

Heidi Ham on August 20th, 2007 at 1:24 pm #

Thanks for the update – I kept checking back hoping…..I can’t imagine how you two felt when you saw her after surgery. Oh I pray that you two will be holding her in your arms very soon. Stay strong Ella – love and kisses – Heidi
Heavenly Father please continue to watch over and give strength to this precious baby and her loving parents. Heal her from her surgery – grow Ella grow 🙂 Thank you for your guidance and patiences for Dr. Kays – guide the nurses as they continue to care for Ella and her needs. Please bring comfort and peace to all.

Auntie Shannon on August 20th, 2007 at 1:34 pm #

I know I have said this before, but you two are truly amazing. The pain and joy you must be feeling has got to be so intense. I know we feel it here so what you all must be felling has to be incredible. Know we are all thinking and praying for you every moment. I hope you two can get some needed rest as Sweet Ella begins to recover. I know it will be a long haul getting her healthy, but as I have said I really believe she is going to be okay. She has already been blessed with such wonderful parents, phenomenal care and a great support system. Heck, she is going to have a difficult time with all of us watching over her. 
I am still preparing the little book so for friends and family reading this please send a quick note or picture, poem, whatever. I want this book to be over pouring of the love that is shown from all your friends and family. My email address is [email protected] or 1964 Port Laurent Newport Beach, CA 92660; you can call me if you need to as well 949-718-1604.

PS. I loved the Go God from Brendan! So our new chant at home will be Go Ella, Go God, Go Ella, Go God!

Gloria Butler Jacobsen & Red on August 20th, 2007 at 1:43 pm #

I printed out pictures of Ella to bring to my prayer group,this morning. Everyone was touched by your beautiful Ella and we’re sending up lots and lots of prayer.Between family and friends she is well covered in loving prayer.. Thank you so much for keeping all updated during this stressful time it keeps us keeping on in prayer.God bless you mightly! love Gloria & Red

Patrick Brumfield on August 20th, 2007 at 2:08 pm #

prayers from CA for sure. can’t wait to hear more on how it went.

Angie on August 20th, 2007 at 2:43 pm #

You guys have been in my thoughts & prayers all day. I’m glad Ella did well with surgery today. Hugs & Kisses ~Angie

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