Archive | August 2012

Minor Follow Up Surgery Scheduled

Charlotte will head back to Beaumont earlier than expected. Dr C asked Sharon to do some scab removal on Charlotte’s nose near the nostril area (which we’ve left alone before now to ensure we didn’t mess with the healing process). 

We sent new photos after the cleanup, concerned that the flap separating her two nostrils was no longer connected to her face and was hanging quite low, close to her lips.

So, at noon on Tuesday, Charlotte will have a minor unplanned surgery to reconnect this part of her nose to her face.

We probably won’t post new Charlotte photos until this is corrected.


Overdue Update

Thank you to everyone for checking in for postings.  Charlotte seems to be doing well.  Her arm is healing nicely, and we think her nose is doing well but really didn’t know what to expect.  There is quite a bit of scabbing, particularly near the nostrils.  Today, I took photos of her nose close up to send to the doctor to check on her progress.


Charlotte enjoys watching Veggie Tales on her new Kindle Fire in her new bedroom.

Her first appointment is September 10 to check on how her nose is healing and possibly schedule the next round of surgeries.


Week Re-cap:

* Charlotte arrived home on Friday to some family, neighbors, and friends from the media (, Wood TV8, and Fox 17).  Her brother played her personal song, Charlotte Rose, for her for the first time.  Her niece Rory and friend Aleanna spent the night.

Photos by Chris Clark at

* By Saturday morning, a worn out Charlotte needed a break, so spent the weekend resting and spending time with her immediate family, while Luke and I (Charlotte’s brother and sister-in-law who maintain this blog) caught up on some much needed quality time with our two children.

* On Monday, the family was visited by Inside Edition, who will air Charlotte’s story nationally in September.  The family opened a PO Box filled with cards and well wishes on Monday, and Charlotte received some special gifts, including a huge stuffed tiger from a couple in New Jersey.


Just some of Charlotte’s many new stuffed friends that she’s received from real friends around the country 🙂

* On Tuesday, Charlotte slept in very late as she was tired from excitement on Monday.  She wanted Rory to spend the night again, but we decided that Rory needs to start sleeping on a normal schedule to prepare for school.    Charlotte was also starting to get a bit bored with being indoors.  We picked up some puzzles and card games like Crazy 8’s and Go Fish to help entertain her.  She cannot really use her left arm too much, so that limits the arts and crafts opportunities.

* On Wednesday, Charlotte’s dad, Tim, learned that he can return to work on September 11, provided his employer’s doctor signs off on the return.  It is bittersweet for the family, as he is looking forward to bringing home income again but is going to miss the extra time he had to spend with Charlotte, Marshall and his grandchildren.  We are praying that he finds an alternate position at the company which will help him to keep his healing shoulder healthy and that he does not re-injure it.

* On Thursday, Charlotte was pretty upset about not being able to ride her bike.  A fall on her face could do some major harm to her nose, so we’re being cautious.  She took her first trip since the surgery to the store with her parents but changed her mind when they arrived and waited in the car with her dad.

After several non-stop, high excitement and high stress weeks, we came down with a summer sore throat and flu (Luke & Amber, Charlotte’s brother & sister-in-law who maintain this site) while we had to catch up at our respective jobs and prepare our daughter for first grade.  We appreciate everyone’s concern for Charlotte and apologize if the timing between postings caused anyone to be concerned for Charlotte’s well-being.

This week, I’ll post some details from the doctor to explain the procedures ahead to finish her nose and to restore her lip and construct her ear.  We will also send more details on the contents of Charlotte’s room and the people who helped make it possible.

This entry was posted on August 31, 2012. 2 Comments

Resting Up

Charlotte is resting in a rented apartment near Beaumont Children’s Hospital and is excited to make the trip home by private plane tomorrow.  A gracious donor has offered his personal plane to take her from Detroit to Muskegon.

On the phone today, Charlotte chatted away excitedly, with me catching about every fourth word.  She explained that she actually slept with her arm above her head, which is a big deal because it meant it wasn’t hurting her anymore.  “I have NO PAIN!” she shouted into the phone.  Wednesday morning, she had been off the pain medication for the first time since the surgery and woke up really feeling it for the first time.  She said that her nose didn’t hurt but that her arm did.  Those who know Charlotte well understand that it takes A LOT to make her cry, so this broke my heart to hear.

She told me that she’s excited to come home and see us (the rest of her family) — and to take a plane ride again, of course.  We’re so proud of her amazing progress.


Charlotte sleeps with her arm raised above her head for the first time since her surgery. Before, she was clutching it to her chest as she slept, babying it due to the pain. She explained that she was excited because it meant her arm doesn’t hurt anymore!


This entry was posted on August 23, 2012. 4 Comments

Lots of Media Attention

Today, the hospital PR staff and Charlotte’s adoptive parents made a decision to do a press release to give the local media a chance to talk to Charlotte, since there were so many interested stations and papers. It seemed like a good idea, as it would be an efficient way to give the press an opportunity to interview Dr. Chaiyasate, Tim & Sharon, and Charlotte and then get them on their way to the nearby apartment they’re staying in until Friday.

After watching the clip on the WZZM 6PM news today, we (Charlotte’s brothers Luke & Aaron, and sister-in-law Amber) were quite concerned that Charlotte looked uncomfortable. We called her mother right away, and she said that Charlotte has really enjoyed the attention when it is one-on-one, but was overwhelmed by the “press conference” held where there were many press members (as most would in that situation). Once the actual press conference was over and she sat down with some press one-on-one, she was excited and being silly once again.

Some news channels have called to see her off the plane and to unveil her reaction to her surprise bedroom. We suggested that this be an intimate return and that we cancel any scheduled press, but Charlotte spoke up and said that she likes the attention and doesn’t mind them being there. She doesn’t know about the surprise bedroom, but welcomed the press to come and greet her when she gets off the plane. Charlotte is excited and proud to show off her new nose, and really wants the chance.

By the way, she also loves all of the cards she has been receiving!  We have a pile for her to go through when she comes home.

After future hospital visits, I cannot see Charlotte agreeing to press conferences, but likely will continue to welcome smaller, more intimate visits from the press.  BTW, check out the WOOD TV8 clip, Charlotte looks like she’s having a great time in it!

Release from Hospital

Great news!  Charlotte will be released from the hospital today because she is doing better than expected.  She and her parents will stay in a rented apartment across the street until Friday, when a donor will fly them home in a charter plane.

She has a very good start to a nose, and will be back in about six weeks to begin the next phase of surgery.  Sue Thoms of wrote a thorough update:  Charlotte Ponce will soon have a ‘beautiful nose,’ Mom says as girl recovers from surgery to repair raccoon-attack injuries


Charlotte takes her stuffed animals for a walk down the hospital hall. She will be released from the hospital today.  Photo courtesy of Beaumont Children’s Hospital.


This entry was posted on August 22, 2012. 2 Comments

Charlotte moved out of ICU

Charlotte has moved out of intensive care and is expected to return home on Thursday, after a week of recovery.  We are so excited to have her home.  She has been very silly, back to her old self.

This entry was posted on August 19, 2012. 2 Comments