Journal entry by Eric Brubaker

We are so cared for. Thank you to everyone who has expressed their concern and love for Norah and our family. Her hospital room wall is being covered with notes, pictures, and beautifully colored pages from coloring books. We haven't had the emotional bandwidth to respond to all of the wonderful sentiments that you have expressed, but know that we read them and are comforted. 

Norah's injuries are serious, but we are beginning to see a path forward. On Wednesday Norah's condition was worsening by the minute, and when we arrived at the UVA pediatric intensive care unit she had just received CPR. She was given a broad spectrum of antibiotics to cover whatever bacteria was infecting her blood and putting her into septic shock.  It was apparent that in order to save her life she would need to be placed on an ecmo machine. The ecmo circulates blood through her body, maintaining her blood pressure and oxygenating her blood. The doctors did everything possible to protect her organs and allow her body to fight the infection. We were told that there could be complications with the procedure and due to the positioning of the ecmo cannulations, or hoses, her left leg would be at risk of decreased blood flow. On Thursday morning Norah went into surgery to move the ecmo cannulation from her leg to her heart. She was in surgery for 6 or 7 hours, and in the course of the surgery it was determined that her leg could not be saved and was amputated at the knee. As I write this, I mourn for Norah and all that she will have to endure. But we as a family have also promised her to be relentlessly and ceaselessly positive. We will love her for all that she has been, all that she is, and all that she will be. If and when we are asked if a full recovery is possible, our answer will be an emphatic yes. She is a whole person, and we know that every one of the beautiful people in her life will treat her as such. Norah will in time be able to shape her own narrative, but for now we will focus on her tenacious spirit and wholeheartedly cheer her every tiny victory.

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday were filled with long hours where we couldn't even dare to hope. Norah still has so far to go. This is a parent's worst nightmare but we are holding on dearly to all the love and support we feel from our family, friends, and community.

Eric, Peggy, and Lydia
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