Jim Bob Duggar opened the newest episode of 19 Kids and Counting Tuesday night by telling the oldest girls he had a "surprise" for them. Little did they know what their dad had in mind!
"The life of the flesh is in the blood," is a Bible quote Jim Bob read to the five oldest girls as he told them that he had a surprise and they were going to be donating blood at the American Red Cross. Even though he knew the girls would be a little scared he explained to them that their donated blood, if it matched, could go directly to their little sister Josie who was born premature and was still in the hospital in Little Rock, Arkansas.
He decided to make it a surprise for the girls because he "didn't want them to fret," but they were still a little nervous about Dad's surprise for them.
"I wasn't too excited about it," Jana confessed. Jinger said, "I don't know, it's kind of scary for us." Jill admitted that she was nervous too but their dad reassured them that "it sounds scary but once you do it it is something you do."
As they arrived at the American Red Cross, Jim Bob said that he would be taking the boys next time to donate blood and then he admitted that it was his first time donating blood and he was nervous too! "I don't like needles," Jim Bob fessed up, but said "It's for Josie and other people who need blood, other than that I wouldn't do it."
The girls are joking that Jim Bob keeps talking because he is so nervous about the needle and sister Jana agrees to go first.
A pop up read "If every Duggar gave the maximum amount of blood, it would be enough to save 60 lives."
All of the girls do well, but one of them gets a little light headed. Jim Bob has the most trouble, as he explains that he flinched when they first pricked him so he blew out a vein so they had to go to the other side. He said that he thought Jinger and Jill would be the weakest but "they did very well." He admitted that he "was the weakest of the bunch."
The Duggars are now living in a rented historic home in Little Rock Arkansas, three hours away from their home in Springdale while baby Josie remains in the hospital. Mom Michelle admits that there are difficulties with the new house, especially when it comes to the kitchen.
"It's a challenge not having an industrial kitchen," Michelle said. A pop up says "At their house in Springdale the Duggars have 6 ovens, 4 refrigerators and 4 deep freezers."
After their visit to the blood bank the girls go grocery shopping for the family. While they are a little silly in the store, dropping things Jill says "I think giving blood has drained us all. We're sapped of our energy now."
Michelle praises them, saying "I think it's been a challenge but they rise to the challenge."
Little Josie was born almost four months early on December 8, 2009 and has been in the hospital since she was born. Michelle gives an update on her status and said "It is time for her to get a feeding tube and she could have breast milk. I think I was excited because it meant that she was doing better."
She is concerned about the feeding tube being inserted but said she is "thankful the nurses and doctors are well trained to take care of a tiny baby like her."
The nurse told Michelle that Josie is growing and gaining weight and that she now weighs 2 pounds 1 ounce. Michelle is ecstatic with the news because she thought Josie only weighed 1 pound 13 ounces. She said that she still thinks of Josie as a "tiny micro-preemie. Josie was born 11 weeks premature, she's now almost four weeks old."
"I love you, I love you precious," Michelle said as she touched Josie's tiny little hand.
A black screen reveals the tenuous medical situation Josie is in. "Approximately 8 inches of tubing is needed to reach Josie's small intestine. If the tube in not inserted properly, milk could seep into her lungs, leading to potentially life threatening complications."
As the tube is being inserted a nurse says "She's not thrilled," and both Jim Bob and Michelle are very worried about her, saying they haven't slept lately.
"Watching Josie go through suffering, it upsets me."
The tube insertion is successful and Michelle said "I was so relieved when they finally go the tube in."
An x-ray was immediately taken and the nurse told Michelle the test results were good, the tube had good placement and in just a few days Josie would be able to eat her mother's breast milk.
"I'm so excited and thankful she's made it to this point," Michelle said. She then revealed her hope for the future with Josie. "In just a few days I may get to hold her."
The preview for the next episode of 19 Kids and Counting showed the boys back home in Springdale dealing with a broken water pipe and dad Jim Bob trying to tell them how to deal with it from Little Rock.