Friday, December 30, 2011

Has it really been 10 days?

We are sorry for keeping our loyal followers waiting and worrying!  These past 10 days have felt like one long, blurry nightmare for all of us.  I have literally stopped in action, looked up to God and said, Why?  Why is this happening to us -- to anyone?  Give us the strength to do this!  Let us know we are doing the right thing!  Good news is, we've made it through what has been described by other lengthening families as the hardest part -- the first two weeks.  This must be the truth because I can't imagine it being harder.  Mariel's iron will has only made it more arduous.  She fights everything.  Unfortunately, there have been many unexpected "hiccups" and "curve balls" for us that we've been told are not the norm, but we've dodged each one.  There have been several times over this past period that I've wanted to blog, but just didn't have the words or energy.  I'll just shoot a few out there and let you use your imagination.  Words such as: mental and physical exhaustion, frustration, guilt, anger, fear and endless worry.  Not to mention the required intestinal fortitude and steady hand needed for some of the daily hands-on wound care that must be performed at home.  Needless to say this has been a major adjustment for us all.  I didn't want to use "Mariel's Rose" as a tool to vent as much as I wanted it to be a source of information about how *great* she is doing.  So I will stop with my rant here and tell you that things seem to be getting marginally better over the past couple of days.  We have gained an essential tool - confidence!  Fear of the unknown is slowly diminishing.  We've got a routine down now and each day we know what to do and what to expect.  The curve balls are not flying about anymore and that alone has helped calm things significantly.   Mariel is reluctantly participating in physical therapy, but she's doing it!  Her muscles seem limber and she's gaining strength.  She is sitting up at the waist and beginning to scoot around.  It is expected that she will begin learning how to walk with her fixator later next week.  Last night she had her first bath in the tub since we left home.  She missed playing with her bath toys in the water so much.  It's the little things that help to normalize this whole experience.  We are trying our hardest to keep our eye on the prize.  We are here to grow bone cells - and that is in fact already happening!  Mariel had her first post-operative x-rays yesterday.  The x-rays revealed that in just the past week alone, since we've begun making first adjustments to her fixator (which we do at home with our trusty wrench four times each day), she has already gained 1.3 cm, or about .5 inches of brand new bone (soft cells that will calcify over these next months).  Miraculous, right?  What a moment it was to see the x-rays yesterday.  There it was right in front of us. All doubts removed.  Reminded by radiographic proof that all of this is indeed worth it and that even if she doesn't know it yet, Mariel will be much better off for it in the very near future!


  1. Stay strong!! Remember she is going to thank you BIG TIME someday for all of this. Congrats on getting through the first 2 weeks. Happy New Year! 2012 is a big year for the Estrins! Hope you were able to have some much needed champagne:) xoxoxo

  2. Love you all to pieces! I love the picture of MR pointing at you with the stink eye!! And the one of her right above that, laying in bed with the tablet - I would swear that is a picture of Rachel!! I'm so crazy proud of you all! xoxo

  3. We will continue to keep you in our prayer! Only God can give you the pease you need! Your an amazing mommy and you will get the needed strength you need just trust in GOD!

    "But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." ~ Isaiah 40:31
    See you soon! Maria

  4. You go Mary and Dan. My thoughts are with you guys and pray for all to go well. I have tears in my eyes reading that she is GROWING bone! It is working and is the reason for all of the trouble you are going through. Keep on keepin' on!
    Much love,

  5. Hi Mary, Dan, and Mariel,
    Great to hear that the bone is growing already! Wow, just amazing in such a short time although I'm sure time doesn't feel "short" to any of you at the moment! Mariel, so glad that you are trying during physical therapy, even when you don't always feel like it. Remember that each time you work at it, you get a little stronger and that all adds up to SUCCESS!!! You are the little engine that CAN!! Love to all of you and sending big cheers from your hometown, Nancy