The daylight hours got off to a poor start as Mal's neurosurgeon said that her brain drained about one-third of what it did on Sunday, but it was still draining too much Cerebral Spinal Fluid to allow her to increase the pressure in her head. That means she will have the ventriculostomy tube in for a bit longer than originally hoped. Also, Mal's IV in her right arm infiltrated, which I learned has a medical definition that has nothing to do with commandos repelling out of a helicopter for a black ops mission. Actually, her vein became too saturated with fluids and leaked it all out into her tissues in her arm. Her arm swelled to about three times it's normal size, and she had to get all three of her IVs pulled and then a new one put in on her left forearm.
After our dual setbacks, though, the day got moving in the right direction when Mal passed her swallow study test. She had to demonstrate that she could still swallow fluids and food, which she did with ease and then asked for more. By the end of the day Wednesday she had the best appetite we have seen from her in almost a week. She still is obsessed with Cocoa Puffs though, as she asked for "cock-a-doodle-doos" nonstop after we asked her what she wanted to eat. We succeeded in convincing her to try something else, too, as she saw Rachel's Cheeto and then asked for some of that, too. Cheetos and Cocoa Puffs, not too sure how high in those brain building Omega 3 fatty acids they are, but man do they taste good together.
Also Malorie had her first physical therapy session, which consisted of reaching a grabbing, and lifting her feet from the prone position. Her next big hurdle to attempt tomorrow is to sit up (with help) and then stay sitting upright (without help). If she can do that, then they will have her attempting layups by Friday and hook shots by Saturday. OK, that is a bit of a fabrication, but I am going on less than 3 hours of sleep. The next test on Friday will be sitting upright with her legs dangling, which moves some blood from the head to the feet, and may make her nauseous.
At around 1:30, Mal was allowed to depart the PICU for her own room up on the 12th floor. Immediately when we got there, Rachel began unpacking gifts and planning where to hang cards and pictures for Mal. We called to schedule a visit for Micah during the dinnertime hour, but then Mal had another meltdown when she was awakened from a nap after only ten minutes. She was shouting at the nurse and at both Rachel and me, and very distraught. We got her to calm down and then fall back asleep, but decided to wait another day or so before we bring Micah in so as not to freak him out entirely.
Yet again today I feel compelled to send a massive thanks to everyone who has been rooting and praying and hoping for Malorie. As her parents, we think she's a pretty special child, and we are just now finding out how many other people feel the same. Thanks again, and please keep us in your thoughts and prayers as we await the results of her biopsy and subsequent treatment plan. Also pray for the other parents in the PICU tonight, as I hope they get to move out with an improving kid soon, too.