Monday, June 15, 2009

Ronald McDonald House and Dr. Hammesfahr

Ronald McDonald House

In the previous post, I mentioned that we are staying at the Ronald McDonald House. It is so nice here! We can stay here for $10 a night. Nearly every evening someone provides a meal. Last night it was a church. There is a huge kitchen and dining room. In the kitchen there is food that is free for anyone. So even when no one provides a cooked meal, there is PLENTY of food to eat. The room is very nice as well. We have fancy sleep number beds. There aren't TVs in the rooms but there are TV rooms and they have dvd's that you can check out. Some of the TV rooms have computers with internet access as well. There is a fenced in yard area and a playground for kids. Each family is required to do a little chore every day. Our chore is to clean the outside furniture. The whole invironment here is really nice. It is such a blessing to us! It has made me want to begin volunteering at the local Ronald McDonald House.

Dr. Hammesfahr

Today we met with Dr. Hammesfahr. He talked with us about Sierra, her diagnosis, and all the treatments and therapies we have done with her so far. We told him about hyperbarics, stem cells, etc. He was very impressed and said, "Wow, you have done a good job! You have done everything right!" It was so encouraging to hear that coming from a doctor! It was one of those moments where I felt like maybe I am not such a bad mom afterall. :-)

Dr. H is going to start Sierra on the vasodialtors. We went and bought a natural one from a health food store today and turned in the prescription for the nitroglycerin. He told us to start her on Ibuprophen three times a day today and tomorrow. He said that sometimes when the vasodialtors are giving they have the opposite effect at first (closing the blood vessels instead of opening them) because the body is reacting to them. He said that giving the Ibuprophen with keep that from happening.

The bad thing is that he said that Sierra will probably have to be on these meds for quite a few years before we can take her off. The good thing is that it doesn't sound like a whole lot. He said a tube of nitroglycerin may last us a year.

He wants to do an MRI, CT, and STECT.

We appreciate your continued prayers for Sierra. We have heard that what Dr. H does works well in conjunction with the stem cells, that is why we brought her so soon after stem cell treatments. We want to maximaze the effectiveness of both of them.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A Long Day

Yesterday, my mother, Sierra and I left our beloved Texas for Florida for two weeks. Sierra will be seeing a neurologist here.

We arrived at the Austin airport with no problems. We found our gate with plenty of time to spare. Since we did not buy a ticket for Sierra but had her as an "infant in lap" I didn't know if we would have an empty seat to put her carseat in. About 40 minutes before boarding time, I went up to the lady at the desk (not sure what they are called)...

Me: Excuse me, do you know if there are any empty seats on the plane so that we can put my baby's carseat on one?

Her: No, I don't know.

That was all. She didn't bother looking it up or anything. The past times we flew, the ladies at the desk were so helpful. They would look up to see if there were any empty seats and then move us to the empty seats. This lady was very unhelpful.

I went back and sat down until boarding time. They began boarding and my "friend" started mumbling into the microphone who could board. They got through the first class and the platinum. Then they began boarding groups. We were group 4. There were several passengers near us that were very kind and told us to go ahead and board since we had our hands full with the baby and stroller. They said that the airlines let people with small children pre-board. With there encouragement we went forward.

Me: We weren't sure if we could board since we have the baby.

Her: No. Just because you have a baby does NOT mean that you can pre-board. That would just slow things down.

So we went back to the line. Several of the other passengers were rather indignent and surprised that we were treated like that. It wasn't just what she said. It was her whole snotty attitude that really upset us.

We finally made it down to the airplane. We asked the flight attendant if there were any empty seats. She was VERY nice and went out of her way to help us. She even helped carry the carseat to our seats. It was nice to have some kindness shown toward us after the other lady was so rude.

Our first flight was late in leaving. Once we landed in Dallas, we had to hit the ground running to make our next flight. We were some of the very last to board, but we made it.

We arrived safetly in Tampa, picked up our rental car, and headed to the hotel.

We were in our hotel room when around 1 am we heard a car screech and several loud thumps. We looked out the window and saw a very damaged red minivan swerving through the parking lot at high speed. We were so afraid that it was going to hit our rental car! A minute later, a black mustang, which was also damaged went racing through the parking lot. I went outside to see what had happened.

Apparently two women had invited a man into there room (who knows where they met him). They said that they didn't know him. A lady knocked on there door and said, "I know my husband is in there!" She punched the lady who answered the door. Then she took her van and rammed it into her husband's car. She hit it so hard that it slammed into the truck next to it, which slammed into the van next to it. He took off too. I don't know if the police ever caught them or not. I sure hope so. We didn't sleep well the rest of the night. We're so thankful that they did not hit our rental car though!

Today we checked into the Ronald McDonald House. It is very nice! I'll write more about it later.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Sierra's Story with News 8 Austin

Last Sunday we had an interview with News 8 Austin. It was really neat because that was the first source of media to actually contact us without us having contacted them first. They heard about Sierra from some other stories and asked if they could come out and do a story on her.

If you scroll half way down the page and click "play" the video will come up.