Monday, August 6, 2012

Hell week.

Today began "hell week" at our house. We are slammed with appointments, lessons, meetings, meet-your-teacher nights, therapies and early morning conditioning camps. Day one, Ralph, Zhen and Theo went to the orthotist.

Children with Down Syndrome have varying degrees of low muscle tone. This leads to pronation, where the ankle collapses inward and makes walking, running, climbing, all those joys of childhood, very difficult and tiring. In time, pronation can cause knee and hip problems, too.

If you ever see my little boys without shoes, check out their squishy ankles...

To hold their feet in alignment, my little boys with Down Syndrome wear SMO's, supra malleolar orthoses. They are custom fitted to each child's foot. And children grow. So we get them adjusted every three months or so, to avoid any sore spots. But, it's a long appointment.

I brought some cars...thank goodness they put us in the big room. Ralph went first. The orthotist took his shoes off and inspected his feet for red spots. He made a few notes in the chart and then disappeared into his workshop. He uses a heat gun to bend and stretch the plastic braces in just the right spots to fit a growing foot.

The orthotist disappears into his workshop, and we wait. And wait. Oh, look! A mirror! Little narcissist.

Then it's Zhen's turn. He has broken a strap off his braces so it takes a little longer to adjust. So we wait. And wait. Theo goes last. He can barely stand to have his feet touched without cracking up laughing!

We wait a little longer. We have long since lost interest in cars. Let's play ball.

I need to give a shout out to my awesome 12 year old son, who came along to help entertain the boys. He's a tender and sweet helper.

Almost done. Let's try some pull-ups!

In other news, Fred and Boo started school today. Aren't they so cute together? They were taking turns reading paragraphs in the science book. Aww!

On tap for tomorrow, 6:30am conditioning, Theo's new occupational therapy, and a mandatory high school sports parent meeting with a concurrent meet-your-teacher night at one of the elementary schools. How am I going to do that? Reading up on cloning tonight...


Jill said...

Hope your cloning experiment goes well! LOL I'll be thinking of you this week. I hate weeks like that! (Elijah has some majorly squishy ankles too!)

It seems so early to be starting school. Our schools don't start until Sept 4th, but then they go until the 2nd week in June. That's no fun either...Hope all goes well this week!