4-year-old girl who has spent her entire life in the hospital goes home for the first time

A little girl who has spent her entire life in the hospital is finally going home — just in time for Christmas.

Phalynn Graham, 4, of Illinois, was born two months early, preventing her lungs from fully developing. She required a ventilator to assist her breathing and had to be monitored at all times. But she finally improved so significantly that on Thursday, the young girl was released from Ranken Jordan Pediatric Bridge Hospital in Maryland Heights, Mo., according to St. Louis news station KSDK. Sporting a pink coat and clutching her favorite Scooby Doo stuffed animal, Graham waved goodbye to the hospital that had been her home.

“It’s like unexplainable. I can’t even find the words,” her mom, Tarvarshay Graham, told KSDK.

In addition to Phalynn’s complicated condition, Tarvarshay has several health issues herself. She has the autoimmune disease Lupus, which requires her to receive dialysis three times a week. In order to be released from Ranken, the family needed to find a nurse to care for Phalynn during her mother’s treatments. With that finally accomplished, this year the entire family will be able to spend the holiday together at home.

“Finally at home, [we] can hang out on Christmas with the family,” Tarvarshay said.

It’s been a long road for Tarvarshay and Phalynn. In addition to Tarvarshay’s and Phalynn’s illnesses, Phalynn’s father also died shortly after her birth.

“We lost her dad when she was two months old so I haven’t enjoyed my baby because she hasn’t been home,” Tarvarshay previously told KSDK.

But in January, Phalynn began to improve dramatically. She was able to come off of her ventilator twice a day for four hours and became a beloved member of the Ranken community, known for running around the hospital.

“That little girl.… She’s got some spice,” her mother said.

The hospital used its Facebook page to honor Phalynn, writing about the bittersweet moment when the little girl went home “after she spent 1,208 days with us.”

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