Thursday, April 24, 2008

PePe Update

PePe is still at Mbabane Clinic. She is now receiving tube feedings via an NG tube to increase her calories and improve her nutritional status. She has lost so much weight because of TB. This terrible disease has caused her to waste away to a mere 12kg (26lb), at 12 years old. This was her weight upon entering the hospital 3 weeks ago. She is now up to just under 15kg. She has difficulty keeping anything down that she takes by mouth. We have had to give her medications by NG tube as well. She had to have a blood transfusion, which helped to strengthen her. She is finally tolerating the tube feedings now. At first, she had vomiting and diarrhea when she got her feedings.

We are waiting to find out if the latest sputum specimen is negative so that she may be able to go back to the home and get her tube feedings there until she can tolerate the feedings by mouth. Our first challenge is to get her to take her medications by mouth again, without vomiting. She is getting really bored with staying in one room, so Sandra and I try to get her out as much as possible between feedings.

We took her to the park on Saturday. She was only able to play for a short while, before her strength was gone. We got one smile out of her, when she was turning the steering wheel of the pretend train! I went yesterday and gave her addition and subtraction problems to work on. When she got to the higher sums, she started using her toes to count! I was on the phone with Sandra, when I noticed her playing with her toes, then I realized she was counting them when she ran out of fingers!

PePe doesn’t talk much, but she is very smart, and she has a very strong will. That is probably why she has lived so long, as sick as she has been. She will not take her medications by mouth for the nurses. Sandra and I have to remind her that if she wants to go home, she must take her medications by mouth, not the tube.

Tonight, we went to visit, and she had made notes for Sandra, Joelle and I, each written personally with our names on it, spelled correctly, saying that she loves us. I will cherish these forever! I know God has something special for this little girl and I am anxious to see what He does in her life and what she will become in Him! She is certainly a blessing to my life!

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