This blog is intended for those who know, love and/or want to support the Hobbies.We know a lot of the Hobbies' friends would love to contribute to Harper's healing process. The purpose of this blog is to provide a way for you to do so. Click on the donate button on the top of the column to the right if you would like to make a contribution to the Hobbie family. All donations will go directly to the Hobbie family to help cover the medical expenses associated with Harper's accident. Thank you for your generosity.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

surgery number 6

Harper had her 6th surgery last Friday. Katie (Harper's mommy) has posted a couple updates on her blog. So if you want to read the latest..

Here is one before the surgery: "LITTLES."

And here is one that recaps the day of Harper's surgery: "SURGERY #6."

p.s. Sorry this update is late. Thank you for checking in and for keeping Harper in your thoughts and prayers! You are much appreciated!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Harper's 5th Surgery

Harper had her 5th surgery this past Friday. Her momma posted some updates on facebook, etc. over these past few days. Here is a compilation of those posts in case you missed them. Please keep the healing of Harper's hand in your prayers! Thank you for taking the time to check. 

December 1: Harper's 5th surgery is tomorrow. Would definitely appreciate prayers...they are seperating the remaining middle finger bone from the tissue pouch (i should really draw a picture of what it'll look like and put it on here...will try to do that).

December 2 - 8:22am : and...she's off. they just wheeled her into surgery. doc always has some sort of something in mind that we don't expect....says he may seperate the pinky instead...wants to "feel around and see what's best". also we didn't know she'll have to have yet another skin graft. disappointing, but we trust our surgeon and know he has our girl's best in mind! thanks so much for all the prayers and sweet comments! stay tuned.

traced her hand just before they wheeled her away. it'll never look like this again... obviously what we want, but we're all used to it this way, so the next few weeks will definitely be a transition.... and then again in 6 months. :)

11am: She's awake and eating a popsicle! Everything went awesome... she now has a little pinky finger and NO NEW GRAFT!

1:15pm We're halfway home. Patient is sleeping on and off. SO thankful for a short hospital trip!

2:48 pm: we are HOME! no wireless in recovery and i don't have FB on my phone, so i'm just now getting a chance to update. she is doing good...eating a happy meal (routine after-surgery food) and watching Rudolph. her hand is looking ok...we're watching the circulation pretty closely...there's a small chance that the "new" finger could die, but God is in charge and i know He loves that little hand more than i do!

December 5 : post-surgery check with the surgeon today for Miss Harper. he said everything looks good, but we have to keep her home all week...can't risk damaging his handiwork due to another kid's clumsiness. :)

Monday, September 5, 2011

k-5 update :)

Here is a new post from Harper's mommy about Harper starting school. :) 

i truly hope that i can keep this mentality for the rest of my life: counting my blessings like it's my job.  no credit to me...God's made it really easy.
we are at the beginning of week 3 of kindergarten for Harper.  SHE IS THRIVING.  our little social butterfly is truly in her element, and could care less if half of every day she's taught in a "foreign" language.  we found out toward the end of june that Harper had been chosen in a lottery to be a student in Jupiter Elementary's dual-language program.  i was super stoked about it and was (and still am) convinced that this extra challenge would be a great distraction in the midst of her learning to live with her new difference.  when she gets to school, she heads to her homeroom, Senora' Cardona's class.  for the first 3 hours, she is spoken to ONLY in spanish.  there is no translation, but so far it hasn't seemed to bother her.  half of the kids in her class are primarily spanish-speaking, so i think they must help their english-speaking classmates out at least a little. (if something is really important, i.e. a fire drill, she'll speak english, but it is VERY minimal.)  the last 3 hours of the day are spent in Mr. Nardelli's class...he speaks english.  my hope is that in his class, the english-speakers are doing a little translating for the spanish kids, but harper hasn't said much about it.  she wakes up every morning super excited, and comes home every afternoon saying, "i love school!!"
we are trying to teach her about compassion...agape' love (loving others the way God loves us), but it is a daily battle to train a child to think about anything but themselves, unfortunately even after they've been through a terrible accident.  she is a very strong-willed little girl with a big personality, has never met a stranger and wants everyone to know it when she walks into a room.  my prayer is that she'll be known at school, not for that big personality, but for a heart that loves others and goes out of her way to be kind and helpful to her classmates.  i'd like her name to be remembered not because she's missing 3 fingers, but because she is a LIGHT...because she is not your average naturally-selfish kid.
her hand is scab-free now, and she is very excited to get to participate in PE and recess after a week of waiting for that last bit of scab to heal.  the next step in her healing is going to be another surgery.  this surgery will be in a few months, and will be to seperate her current "stump" (eek...always a lack of a better term for what her hand is right now...sorry) into 3 little digits.  the tissue around those 3 little bones (below the knuckle) is doing really great as of right now.  there is alot of scarring, which we expected, but it really gets better and better every day.  we are still putting aquaphor on her hand every day, to get the skin as healthy as possible before the next surgery, but other than that, everything is totally normal.  i spent some time last week taking apart the medicine box we've had on the kitchen counter since june 6th.  it felt good.  normalcy is bliss as far as i'm concerned.
i feel like a broken record saying this again and again, but we have been incredibly overwhelmed by the generosity of our friends and familly and our friends' friends and our family's families.  the fact that we don't have to really worry about medical expenses at this point is unbelievable.  one less major stress for us to worry about, fight about, cry about.  THANK YOU.  the body of Christ is a powerful, far-reaching, unique GIFT.  and again, we are counting our blessings.  there are so many others out there who are hurting so much worse than we ever did and going through so much more than we ever will.  we are aware of that, and we know that all of you could give your time and money and prayers to them instead.  so, THANK YOU.
will try to update again next month, but just remember:  no news is good news! 
Much love and thanks,
Katie (and Ryan, Harper, Layne, & Maitland)

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Exciting News

We have heard that a generous donor has committed to matching $1 for $1 on donations made to Harper's fund! So exciting! Double your money today! :)

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

August 2nd update

Thank you for checking in on what is happening with Harper. Here is a new update from Harper's mommy : 

harper's 4th surgery was last friday.  it wasn't planned.  we've learned that things happen that way with plastic surgery and with this type of injury.  it will be a slow, roller coaster ride.  back-up to last wednesday.  i noticed that her pinky bone was exposed again (3rd time).  i was incredibly discouraged because last time the doctor had seen it, he'd mentioned the fact that he might just need to eventually "take" that bone.  obviously, we did not want that to happen...would be really hard to explain to harper why the doctor would purposely cut off a bone.  i e-mailed him a picture from my phone.  the quality was terrible, but you could clearly see a yellow dot where the bone was showing.  that is the only proof we have that it actually ever was showing, though, because God did a miracle with that little hand.  when we got to the hospital on friday morning, for the surgery where the doctor was going to try to cover the bone, THE DOCTOR COULDN'T SEE THE BONE anywhere.  he kept commenting about how much better her hand looked than what the picture had shown, because he knows that i'm a photographer (to which i would always reply with a negative comment about the Blackberry camera quality).  i honestly still can't believe it.  i keep trying to explain it away.  the doctor and ryan kept looking at me, almost feeling sorry for me, when i kept insisting that i was 100% sure i'd seen it...all day Wednesday i'd seen it and been sick to my stomach every time.  i'm still upset that no one else saw the "before" so that they could TRULY appreciate the miracle that God did, but at one point the doctor looked at me and said, "well, Somebody fixed it."
here's the crazy part: at one point that day (Wednesday), when i was in between phone calls with doctor's offices, i had the single thought, "you should pray for a miracle."  but i answered in my head with something like "that's stupid.  it won't happen."  so i'm ashamed to say that i didn't pray for a miracle.  i really felt like God healed her just to show me that it is possible and that i need to GROW MY FAITH.  however, i talked to my mom today and she said that her exact prayer had been that the Lord would cover that bone.  so, i guess He could answer her prayer and slap me in the face at the same time.  PRAISE YOU, O GOD WHO ANSWERS PRAYER AND PUTS YOUR HAND OVER OUR DOUBTING MOUTHS!!
she may still lose that little pinky bone.  i have no idea what God has planned, but i know that next time the Lord puts that thought in my head ("you should pray for a miracle."), i WILL pray for it.  no matter what it may be.  as far as the surgery, the doctor did another small skin graft from her stomach and basically laid it over the end of the 2nd graft that was healing really slowly.  he was also trying to give that pinky end some extra coverage.
update as of today: went to her post-op appointment to get the bandage removed.  the doctor is NOT big on bandages, so this was the first time her hand has been bandaged after surgery, and i have to say that it was SO nice to have that thing covered and padded for 4 days.  i felt so much more relaxed and less worried and naggy.  none of us were excited about getting the bandage off, but obviously we want what's best for that hand.  as the doctor was pulling off the bottom layer of guaze, it pulled on the spongy bandage that was sewn onto the graft.  it pulled pretty hard, i guess, because her hand started bleeding.  and harper started to panic a little.  we got the bleeding stopped, but i was/am pretty discouraged at how fragile her hand is right now.  ryan and i were talking about how we wish we could just put it in a cage or where it could still get air, but would be protected from anything she could bang it on or rub up against.  tonight at bedtime, it (the new graft) looked pretty gray...we know that's not a good thing.  so, i will pray myself to sleep tonight asking God to yet again show us what He can do when we have FAITH.  if it isn't a pretty pink color by Thursday, i won't doubt God's ability or His level of love for us; i will heartily assume that He has something else in mind for that precious little hand.
side note:  if you aren't a believer (of God or miracles), please don't be offended or off-put by the way i write.  i've thought about making things as matter-of-fact as possible, in hopes that maybe we'd get more donations that way, but i literally cannot seperate my spiritual thoughts from the facts.  God has never been more visible and tangible to me than He is now. 
constantly counting our blessings,

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

July 27th

A new update from Harper's Mommy:

our computer crashed about 3 weeks ago and has been a BEAR to get up and running again.  we've had lots going on anyway and i don't know that i would've gotten a note up before now even without the great excuse.
i noticed that my last note was a little over a month ago.  that is bananas.  feels like an eternity.  so much has changed.  and it's really all been for the better.  the morning after the second surgery, i noticed that the bottom of the flap was turning a dark gray color.  by the next day, we'd pretty much determined that it was dying (w/the help of photo e-mails to the surgeon who was in INDIA at the time) and we had to start her on nitroglycerin cream.  we rubbed in all over the "flap" for 48 hours in hopes that it would help circulation and give the dying skin a wake-up call.  it didn't.  the bottom of the flap died.  it turned black and hard.  however, the top is a beautiful color that matches the rest of her hand beautifully.  also, her belly looks fantastic...i was in awe of how incredible of a transformation it was.  she has one long line from her hip bone down next to her belly button).  we are confident that it will shrink alot over the years, so hopefully she won't be too bothered by it (handsome, Godly men dig scars anyway, right?).
because the bottom of the flap had died, AND, after about 5 days we noticed that her pinky bone was exposed, the surgeon wanted to get her into surgery as soon as he was back in the country.  we were in sebastian at the annual BFR (buerke family reunion) that week, but ryan/harper/me headed home for a short night's sleep and then drove down to mirimar for her procedure early the next morning (july 6th).  it went well.  he took another graft from her stomach (just extended the original "line" he'd made during surgery #2).  after she woke up, she was incredibly motivated to get out of there because she knew we were headed back to "the beach house" to see her cousins.  it was so adorable...almost as soon as she opened her eyes and was coherant she asked to go to the bathroom...she knew that's what had to happen in order for her to be released.  we got back just before bedtime and she was able to eat some brownies and ice cream and even do some sparklers that night with her cousins (pics on my sister natalie's page).
i really wish that i'd been blogging or something during these past few weeks because it's really been fun to see her get back to REALLY being herself.  her hand is gross and scabby, but she doesn't care.  she uses her 2 "good" fingers all the time...almost like normal.  it has been VERY encouraging.  my only struggle has been that i'm a nervous wreck because of the fact that she is romping around like a normal kid.  her hand is still very fragile...she's knocked it a few times and it bleeds (but praise God for that healthy bloodflow!).  i am NOT a nervous or normally naggy mom, so it's been a struggle for me to find a balance between letting her be a kid and not letting her put herself in danger (if she fell on her hand, it would be BAD NEWS).
this morning after breakfast i was doing her medicine routine (we just have to apply a coat of Aquaphor 3 times a day) and noticed her dadgum pinky bone sticking its head out again.  e-mailed pics to the doctor and by the end of the day, we know we're in for another surgery on friday.  we are preparing ourselves for the possibility that the surgeon might just take her pinky bone because it refuses to keep its tissue....they can't just graft skin straight over bone.  the bone is very short, so if he does remove it, it won't change her life.  however, it will be really hard to explain to her why in the world they would cut a bone off on purpose.  she has no idea that we've been having this problem for a month (of course we haven't ever told her that her pinky bone is sticking out).
anyone who has kids knows that there is no greater joy than hearing something come out of your kids' mouths voluntarily that you have said to them over and over and thought they never heard.  harper said to me last night, "God had a reason for me getting my fingers cut.  We don't know what it is, but it will make me a better person."  you could not have slapped the smile off my face.
i'll do my best to write something else after friday's surgery.
also, she starts school in a month, so i'm excited to see all that will pan out once that happens.
This is what it will look like for several months until the digits are seperated. The bottom isn't this pretty...very scabby bacause it's the newer graft.