Friday, February 4, 2011

Serial casts

Another huge thing that I glossed over in January?

Seth had casts put on at the beginning of the month. In a nutshell, serial casts are another step like his braces to aid the range of motion in his ankles, reducing the over toned muscle, helping to keep his heel touching the ground, hopefully avoiding muscle-lengthening surgery and knee and hip, back problems later, etc. The casts, one on each calf and foot had to stay on for '5 sleeps'.

And this kid.

He thought it was very cool. How cool is that? Seth lapped it up as a chance to enjoy the day out as the center of attention, the life of the party, entertaining the staff and myself with his comic.

He could walk around in the casts later but had to wait two hours for them to harden, so was put in the world's tiniest wheelchair to get out of the centre to the van. He thought it was awesome, and looks at me with wide eyes and says, "Do we get to take this home?!" I couldn't help but laugh. Thane was with us and as we waited in the large entry way Seth chased him around, threatening to run him over. I had wished I'd had my camera with me, but it wasn't necessary. I can still see him. I had made him a new toque over the holidays (my first successful knit item by the way!), he was wearing it and had his two little red casts in this teensy wheelchair, Troy's black socks over his toes, wheeling around as fast as he could, him and Thane laughing their guts out.

His appointments always make me feel so lucky for the healthy children we have. That being in a wheelchair was a fun novelty. Our infrequent appointments are admist the child-size physio equipment Seth has no need for, full of straps for children who have little control over their muscles and much greater challenges dealt to them. The last time Seth was fitted for braces we watched an athletic looking teen test out a new leg, one built for running. Seth's barely perceivable, mild cerebral palsy seems like such a non-issue among these.

Seth made out well though, only slowing down on the last day. Unfortunately we only snapped a couple pictures just before taking the casts off, when he was anxious to be rid of them. He had developed a blister, they had warned us that was the worst that might happen. So that day we propped him up on the couch to be more still and told him he could be prince for the day, and if he needed anything just to ask. As I drank my tea snuggled up on the other end of the couch, he says in his best princely voice, eyelids fluttering, shoulders drawn up and hands folded on his lap, "So Queenie, what would you like to do today?". He cracks me up.

The best part is that the casts were very successful, follow-up measurements showing vast improvement, pushing his range into 'normal'! It seems his brain hasn't yet noticed the new capabilities his feet have, but that his range is that what Claire or Thane would have. He was sent home with walking on his heel exercises to do that will hopefully make those neurons connect. When his five sleeps were up we just had to peel the casts off.

Not to change the subject, but I want to show off the hat a little as well. It *only* took me three unsuccessful hats on the same pattern (too wide, too short, close but not quite - more like a yamaka than a toque) to get to this one, my first actual, more importantly finished, knit something. Although by the time I got to this one I had at least figured out how to switch colors for some lovely stripe action. So a couple more pictures in celebration of the hat and it's proud new owner. (The excitement of my kid being excited I had knit him something and proud to wear it was a high I had underestimated!)

Oh yes, one more thing. Notice those bottom teeth missing? Big boy growing here I tell you.

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