Casting away our tip-toes

After a month and 4 sets of casts Leah finally got her casts off. While it wasn’t really that bad, I am very relieved to finally get those little legs free.

We had been going to PT for months, and doing nightly stretches and wearing braces at night — when her physical therapist finally broke down and said we needed to do something to break through the plateau. Being someone intimately familiar with plateaus with flexibility training I agreed. Kelly didn’t. Well, she did on the intellectual level that it was “something that needed to be done for the good of her baby” but was emotionally very much against the idea. Kelly lost the toss and had to take Leah for the first casting appointment. Which was located right smack in the middle of DC at the children’s medical center. Let me tell you, driving there in rush hour, in the rain, is no fun. Leah, being a four year old, freaked out when she got the casts on and there was much crying and sadness. To her credit, she was corporative the entire time, with out hitting, biting or any of the other natural defenses in a four year old’s arsenal. Once she got them on, and was coaxed into walking she was a trooper until bedtime. It was prepping for lights out that she couldn’t wear her princess slippers that she work EVERY NIGHT to bed. Begging and pleading and a few tears later she passed out due to exhaustion. It was a long day for a little girl.

Once we were through that first day, she coped much better than I expected. Better than I would have. She could run and climb and even walk on her tip-toes in those clunky things. Week later, the night before we went back in to get the next iteration of the casts we got to unwrap her ankles and give her a much needed bath. She will tell you her feet get sweaty, I had always assumed it was just a way of getting to take off her shoes and socks — but now I believe her. Thems were some stinky feet. Unfortunately at this point she was still right back up on her toes.

I got to take her for her second appointment, and she did much better for the Physical Therapist, was happy and energetic — and the possibility of betting a chocolate muffin at Greenberry’s was one effective bribe. At this point the casts didn’t bother her too much, though she did get a nasty blister from one of them, and she was back to her self.

Now that we are done with the final set — and see her running around striking heel first I am very glad we did it. Full range of motion on her right foot and no more than 5° shy on her left foot. Although I think when you get her to properly relax you can feel it the stretch sink past that last few degrees.

Only regret I had over the ordeal was that I wasn’t around when she clocked grandpa in the head with the fiberglass club feet. Grandpa love to get clubbed!