Carrying On

There hasn't been much medical news, but the general update is: things are going well. M seems to be progressing well in his AFOs. We saw his surgeon last week for a quick check in and she is pleased--his feet are naturally holding themselves in a more flexed position, and he does seem to be gaining additional correction through wearing the orthotics. She seemed to breathe a sigh of relief as she proclaimed that we were on the right track now.

This was confirmed by his most recent physiotherapy visit--I think our therapist had been slightly unsure of this treatment plan, since it's pretty unorthodox, but she was pleasantly surprised with what she saw. He continues to make progress on all his motor skills, but the deficit he is working to overcome is significant. He can now speed "crawl" all around the house (still with his own unique style--he is capable of traditional crawling, but the movement of his legs that way is still not his preference. We are working on it, because while generally any form of crawling is considered fine, he really needs to build some underused muscles in his legs), and we are working on climbing over small obstacles and up steps--basically, everything a parent usually wants to avoid their kid learning, we are supposed to encourage. His feet still don't naturally fall into a flat footed position, so all the standing based skills are a bit of a struggle, but he is working on them.

I think last time I promised to share what we've learned about AFOs that could be helpful, but I'm not sure I have too much wisdom here. The one product I would recommend stocking up on is tall socks--ones that can be folded down over the top of the orthotic, like the Triple Roll ones from Old Navy. (Hint: for some reason they are only listed under "toddler", not "baby", even though they come in tiny sizes. Also, we have some in 6-12 month, 12-24 month, and 2/3T, and they all fit about the same. If anything, the 6-12 ones are a tad bigger than the 12-24s!)

The one tip I would love is how to deter him from just pulling on the velcro strap and removing them! Shoes over them slows him down by a few seconds, but not much longer. Fortunately, he doesn't seem to be doing it due to discomfort, because he also tries to put them back on. It's just a fun game to play for him, so hopefully the novelty will wear off and he will move on to trying to take off his clothes or his diaper or pull everything down off our shelves--you know, the usual toddler milestones.

We now get a short reprieve from medical visits--4 weeks between physio sessions, and nearly 6 weeks between doctor's visits! The next orthopedic visit will be more about the hips than the feet, it sounds like. M will be getting an x-ray then to see if the brace he has been wearing for sleep has worked. I'm uncertain about it, because the left hip is still "clicky" when he moves, and he's moving so much more these days he's putting some stress on it. Fingers crossed!