Photography by Jenny Lloyd Photography
Meet Ella. She is Beauty Revived.
This is Ella Bella. Just looking at her, you would never know what this vicarious little gift from God has
You see, Ella just couldn’t wait to live in Texas with her big brother and sister – so she made her
premature debut at 29 weeks on February 3, 2015 and spent the first 13 weeks of her life in the NICU.
But that was just fine with her… because she was right where she knew God wanted her to be… and
everyone knows – no matter what the circumstance – everything is better in Texas.
From the beginning Ella let everyone know just how tenacious she was going to be. She entered this
world with a brain bleed, 2 different heart conditions: ASD and VSD, immune deficiencies, and failure to
thrive. Her lungs were nowhere near developed and she immediately struggled with learning to eat and
swallow. Within her first day of life she lost over a pound, spent her first 3 weeks on a breathing
machine, and the first 11 weeks with an NG tube to help her eat. After finally being cleared and released
from the hospital, she spent more time in and out of the hospital and made countless visits to doctors
and specialists. She began feeding therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Physical Therapy all at the ripe
old age of 6 months. Ella continued to be hospitalized for pneumonia, aspiration pneumonia and lung
infections, poor weight, but to top it off – she continued to struggle with eating and that just consumed
her little life. After numerous tests and procedures, in early December of 2015 she had a G-Tube or
“button” placed to help her gain weight and make her able to eat. She was on a feeding pump strictly for
2 ½ months. After that, she was slowly able to transition to both mouth and tube feeds. However; no
matter how many tests were run, and no matter how many specialists she was sent to see, doctors
could not determine the cause of why Ella continued to be so sick. All things just kept pointing back to
her coming to Texas at 29 weeks of age. In October of 2016, she was sent to see a genetic specialist to
start the process of genetic testing. When the test results came back, Ella was diagnosed with Cystic
Fibrosis and Chronic Lung disease. From that moment on, her whole world was turned upside down. She
began 10 different medications, 3 different breathing treatments, 3 different inhalers, hours on oxygen
and a pulse ox machine, and even more time in and out of doctor offices. Within 2 weeks of receiving
the test results, Ella’s family started to prepare for her next surgery. While visiting with the ENT that day
– the worst scenario began to play out… it was Cancer. This tiny little bundle of energy has Cancer. In
January of 2017 Ella went in for surgery. Doctors removed a tumor on her esophagus, she was suctioned
out, scraped out, and had biopsies taken of her lungs. During the operation – doctors found another
tumor in her lung and an infection and fluid surrounding it. Ella has under gone Chemo and radiation
and she is still waiting to see what God and her doctors have planned next.
The end of 2016 and the beginning of 2017 were spent with many treatments, hospital stays, countless
amounts of steroids/medications and Ella did it all with a brave face, the biggest smile and a heart filled
with joy. When you look at Ella on the outside, you would never be able to tell what she has been
through. You would never see a sick little girl. She lights up a room in a second, and never lets her
circumstances bring her down. She is strong, she is resilient, and is most definitely a phenomenon.
Despite her illnesses and what she battles, she is thriving, maybe in a different way than most 2 year
olds, but never the less – this girl won’t let anything get in her way. Ella is an angel walking among us,
constantly reminding us that God is awesome and his plans are greater than our own. Every day with
Ella is nothing short of a miracle.