Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Sad, Happy, Sad, Happy....Aw Hell I Don't Know Anymore

We picked up Daniel's 3rd pair of AFO's.
Does this photo make anyone else sad? Besides me?
It makes me sad because
  • He's only 2 1/2 yrs old and no child should have to have leg braces...its just not fun.
  • Its sad that he has a condition that means he'll probably have these types of braces for a really long,long time
  • Just the fact that they started off so small and look how big they are now...means the baby is growing up!
  • Just another thing to make him look different than other children his age
  • They just represent 'a struggle'

It makes me smile because

  • It gives him the strength to stand on his legs and work his muscles. It gives him that extra little umpf to get his walker going.
  • They help give him his independence and freedom
  • They give me hope, that there is a chance that he WILL walk with his head held high, and he will conquer this struggle, and he will inch his way along. It may be a slow process, but he WILL get there.

Never imagined I could resent an object as much as I do his AFO's and then turn around and love them for other reasons. Oh the emotional roller coaster we live! UP one minute and Down the next. Sad, Happy, Sad.....

Anyone know what to do with used AFO's?


Anonymous said...

awww look at the little itty bitty afo's! there so cute. look at how big he has started to get!

Anonymous said...
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Justinich Family said...

I totally feel you Melanie. I have saved Evan's first pair of AFO's, they are so small. We are on his fourth pair now. We have the dog playing baseball now, with green straps, kind of reminds me of Christmas. Anyway, I was shopping for shoes with him trying to find a pair that was not tennis shoes and not 3 sizes too big, no luck of course especially because he wears a size 13 normally. Anyway, I remember going outside of the store sitting on the bench and crying and saying I hate your AFO's, and he looked at me with the saddest face and then gave me a hug, he is so sensitive to when people are upset, especially me. I felt so bad but I was so mad that I could not just go and buy my kid a pair of shoes. Now life is better since I know about keeping pace but they are going to cost us $71.99 a pair because I have to buy 2 sizes bigger as Evan has turbo boots in both and a hinge on the right side. Well, this is really long but I just wanted you to know you are not alone in your love/hate relationship with the AFO's.

Daisy said...

I hear you. My son's AFOs fit in his shoes, but didn't when he was young. It makes shoe shopping a challenge. In fact, I've blogged about the challenge of buying shoes for a kid who can't tie at age 16! Thank goodness for elastic; velcro never worked.

C said...

Me too.

Q's almost out of his second pair and we're on our second complete set of both soft little mitts and weight-bearing ones.


As to what to do with them? Let's use them as markers in the flower beds or turn them into wind chimes or something. I don't know. Anything to make items of such ambivalence turn into pure loveliness. You know?

Me said...

We never had the dinos but we had the puppies on red straps and the sports balls on blue. We also had trucks and his first teeny tiny ones were all white. I, too, can't decide what to do with the old ones. They are of no benefit to anyone else. Throwing them out seems wrong. We just keep them, standing in the shoes he wore most often with them.

When he has them made now, we have the top pads and straps done in white. They kind of blend in with his socks. The bottom straps and trims are his to select each time. It does help a little if they are cute.

Susan, Mum to Molly said...

We don't have AFO's specifically, but I definitely know what you mean Melanie.

I have a similar love-hate relationship with Molly's support equipment - I love what the wheelchair, etc allow her to do, but I hate that we need them...

It appears that all around the world we mums of kids with a disability feel the same. Kinda nice that at least we're not alone, I suppose.

Hugs to you, Susan
in Sydney, Australia

Chaney, Lee, and Jackson said...

You can donate the old AFOs back to Cascade (if they were made by Cascade) and they will send them to other countries for reuse.

I have a similar pic on my son's blog, with the different pairs lined up :)

I found your blog through your link on your siggy on the Blenderized Diet Yahoo group.

Kim said...

I so have enjoyed reading about you're son. What a cutie. I can totally relate to the ups/downs you feel as I am going through much of the same w/my daughter. Hang in there! Thanks for posting the links on you're blog as I have printed out some info. and will be taking it to my daughters Neurologist-our kids sound so similar and my daughter is yet undiagnosed at 8yrs. I am also part of the SCE yahoo group so I'm sure our paths will cross again. Take care and best wishes to you and your family. Kim