Posted (The West's) in All Posts on December-13-2007

Psalm 42:11
Why are you downcast, O my soul?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.

Baby Jonathan went to be with our Lord yesterday. Our heavy hearts pour out for his family and we pray the Lord’s grace upon them. Please pray that Jasmine and Chris will seek the one true source of peace during this difficult time.

Lord Jesus, we thank you for the opportunity to be touched by this boy’s life. We take comfort knowing that he’s in your arms right now. Praise you Lord for your grace and mercy.

Father, we lift up Jasmine and Chris, and we ask that they would draw near to you. Lord, touch their hearts. Let them know that you’re right there beside them at all times. You are the Wonderful Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace. Bless them Lord. In your Holy Name…Amen.

Ella Renae is doing alright today. I think she might have been getting a little too flirty with baby Par, so the nurses decided to move her bed…to the opposite side of the NICU.

She had a pretty good temper tantrum earlier as well. They tried everything to calm her down, holding, rocking, the binky, a clean diaper, etc., but nothing seemed to work. Fortunately the nurse was able to get her stabilized by increasing her oxygen flow up to 1 liter. Eventually she stabilized and they weaned her oxygen back down to 500mL. After this, she pretty much behaved herself for the rest of the day. The fact that her numbers came back in line is a good thing.

Tina and I are still a little nervous about her progress, mostly due to our previous experience. We’re really hoping that she will remain stable enough to keep off of any kind of mechanical ventilation. So far, so good though. We expect to have some episodes where she gets really upset, but hopefully some holding, rocking, and increased oxygen will be all it takes.

That’s the thing with our girl. She doesn’t have a lot of reserve. What I mean is that, when she gets upset, it takes a very short time for her stats to drop and for her to desaturate. Now over time, we expect her to get stronger, but it’s going to take just that…time.

After seeking the Lord in prayer, and through your prayer support as well, God had given us strong confirmation to stay in Gainesville until the summer. This decision did not come easy. We REALLY want to go back home to Colorado, but we know without a doubt that God wants us here for now. Our desire is to be obedient to where He wants us to be.

We weren’t sure how the details would work out, but we knew that if He wanted us here, things would fall into place. Thankfully, Tina is able to perform her job remotely, as she’s been telecommuting for years. However, I would normally go into an office everyday in downtown Denver. My employer was kind enough to let me telecommute with the expectation that I’d only be gone 8 to 12 weeks. As you know, it’s already been 20+ weeks and they gave me an extension because Ella is still in the hospital.

A big part of our confirmation for this decision, was whether or not my employer would continue to let me telecommute for this extended season. Without hesitation, they gave their blessing. Thank God! We perceived that this would be our largest roadblock, but now that it’s been overcome, it frees us to focus on what’s best for Ella.

Our instincts are telling us to stay close to Dr. Kays while she is still fragile. The reality is, once our girl gets out of the hospital, it’s not like we’re going home with a totally fine baby. Ella’s going to need the best environment to grow strong so that she can increase her reserve and eventually be exposed to the elements of the world. She’s not going to be able to do that right away. She’ll need to ease into it.

Driving back to Colorado, during winter, combined with the increased altitude is not the best scenario.

Plus, we need to take more time to prayerfully consider and research her future care in Colorado. The preliminary findings through the Children’s Hospital in Denver were not very promising.

One blessing we didn’t expect when we started this journey is the outpouring of support and friendship we have found in the staff in the NICU. We’re excited to see what God has in store for us.

Please continue to pray for our strength as we look to extend our time in Gainesville. It has been emotionally draining to be away from family, friends, and our familiar surroundings, but our desire to be obedient outweighs these feelings.

Psalm 117:2
For great is his love toward us,
and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever.
Praise the LORD.

Roberts Family on December 14th, 2007 at 12:29 am #

If you have the chance, please let Jonathan’s parents know that we are so very sorry to learn that he has passed away. I’ll be praying for them. And for you, too, as you make this big transition to Florida for the next while.

If I were Ella, I think I’d be inclined to the occasional tantrum, too. Glad to hear that she settled down.

The Laz Fam on December 14th, 2007 at 1:23 am #

what a lot of emotions this post brings… it is our joy to share in prayer with you, for sweet Jonathan, and for beautiful Ella, and for the future of the West family. you remain in our prayers, as do Jasmine and Chris, and the God-sent staff there.
Blessings ~ KTJB

tamara tessmer on December 14th, 2007 at 6:03 am #

All too familiar emotions right now. If you see Jasmine and Chris tell them that we are praying for strength and peace.
Well now that it is official we will have to set up a play date. Tina have a great birthday tomorrow!!
Love ya guys,

Eusey Family on December 14th, 2007 at 7:51 am #

So heatbroken to hear about Jonathan. We pray tht the Lord gives them understanding and hope during this difficult time. We just can’t even imagine the pain. May the Lord also give you and Josh strenth right now as Ella moves in a new direction. We trust her little body will find the reserve when her emotions get a little high and that you guys are all on the right path staying close to Dr. Kays. Tina, we too send a big birthday kiss (we will send it tomorrow too).

Many blessings today to Ella.

XO The Eusey clan (Rick, Shannon, Megan, Richard, Claire and Ryan)

Lizotte Family on December 14th, 2007 at 8:05 am #

Praying for Johnathan’s family to find strength in God.

HOORAY!!!! I get to keep you guys here in Sunny Warm Florida… sorry snowy Colorado will have to wait. Fortunately Eric and I have plenty of work reasons to visit Colorado too. Things really have a way of coming together.

It looks like we are learning how to manuver Miss Ella and her canula. Very exciting to watch, I think this sounds like great progress.

John & Estela Williams on December 14th, 2007 at 8:07 am #

I sad to hear about Jonathan, but feel blessed to know that he is with the Lord and in such a better place. I pray for his parents, family and friends who he touched during his short life.
Glad to hear that Ella is doing so well and that there is talk about getting out of the hospital… this just shows tremendous progress. I am so glad you guys FOUGHT for her. Miss and love you guys… If there is anything I can do here in Colorado, please let me know. Love you guys!

Christe Mitchell on December 14th, 2007 at 8:35 am #

Glad to see Baby Ella is doing good. My thoughts and prayers are with you guys. Please let Jonathan’s parents know my heart is very heavy for them. My prayers are with them and I know how hard it is, and I also know he is completely healed now and up in heaven with our sweet Jonathan Mitchell. God Bless.

Fran Jarrett on December 14th, 2007 at 9:23 am #

Tears for Jonathan this morning but know he is with the Lord. Prayers for his parents during this difficult time.
Know that your faith always brings you to the right decisions and I am sure it is doing so at this time as well. Although those of us in Colorado miss you terribly and long to meet Ella we also want what is best for your precious girl!
Love and prayers to all,Fran

Kristen on December 14th, 2007 at 2:27 pm #

Sometimes that “being still” part is the best place for us to be while the Lord takes care of us. Congrats on your decision to stay put.

Julie on December 14th, 2007 at 2:55 pm #

So wonderful that you can now talk about “until summer” and her “first few years.”

What a long way she has come.


Joel Snyder on December 14th, 2007 at 3:08 pm #

Ella, I am full of sorrow to hear that Jonathan passes away. Be sure he is in a better place in heaven. I am praying for his family and hope they will recieve the blessings they deserve. I hope that you continue your great progress. I will check on you later. Love, Grandpa!!!!!!!!!!!!

Avery Kronz on December 14th, 2007 at 3:47 pm #

I am so sorry that Jonathon has passed away. Right know my little 4 year-old cousin Drew,was sitting in my lap while I was checking on Ella, and I told him that baby Jonathon the baby we had been praying for had went to live with Jesus and he almost started crying. please tell Jonathon parents that they are in our prayers. love, Avery Kronz and Drew Oldham

Williamsburg on December 14th, 2007 at 4:59 pm #

Guys we just want you to know that, as much as we love and miss you and wish you could be “home” again, we know beyond a doubt that your home is in Jesus’ heart, and that you need to be wherever he decides he wants you. What a blessing to have a place like Shands for Ella’s care and your support. And besides, it’s only a coupla short plane hops away, right? Thanks, J’s employer, for your support!
We are stricken with grief over Jasmine & Chris’s loss of their precious son – what an incredibly difficult time; they and their family will continue to be in our constant prayers, as will you as I know this has hit you hard as well. Hugs, love and prayers as always. XOXOXO

Steve & Veronica Johnson on December 14th, 2007 at 9:12 pm #

we’re bummed we won’t see you in March but you’re obviously making the wise decision. Sophia and Ella will have to meet each other one of these days. 🙂

Tammy on December 14th, 2007 at 9:53 pm #

I’m so sorry to hear about baby Jonathan. My heart goes out to his family during this very difficult time. It cannot be easy for either of you either, since you’ve also been in close contact with Jasmine and Chris. The NICU becomes an extended family of sorts, and everyone experiences the loss.
My heart felt prayers go out to you all. Sweet Ella looks wonderful.

God Bless

jordan on December 15th, 2007 at 12:36 am #

Say what you will about rupert, but Darrin and Alex are without a doubt 2 of the nicest most standup people I have had the pleasure of working with. It is so cool of them to give you the ability to put your family needs above your job, and still let you work in florida.

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