“She Didn’t Have a Surgery”

Those were the words of the orthopedic surgeon today at our follow-up appointment, after he looked at the Xrays we had just taken. “She is totally healed from the surgery…treat her now as if she didn’t even have a surgery. Time to get moving!”


I am thrilled at how well her bones healed, and am so very excited to get to the fun stuff now. Jayna, one of the PTs who will be helping us “get moving” was at the appointment with us today. We filled the waiting time by excitedly building a list of things Abbie is going to be able to work on that she either hasn’t been able to do in a long time, or has not been able to do since she was injured:

* Getting on her hands and knees
* Working on sit-to-stand transitions
* Walking down the hall in the Walkable
* Working on flexion beyond ninety degrees for her ankles and knees.

And, the very best…asking Jayna what Dr. B. meant when he said he’d ordered “DAFOs” for Abbie’s feet instead of “AFOs” (the type of foot splints we’ve always used.) She explained that DAFOs are molded very closely to the feet and legs so that they fit inside SHOES!!! (They also let Abbie move her foot up and down, but that wasn’t what thrilled me, sorry to admit.)

My sweet girl has been stuck with clunky fiberglass boots, albeit with cute patterns on them, for all these years. Now we can go shoe shopping again!!! To truly appreciate this you must know that Abbie picked out her first pair of shoes at 9 months old, when she grabbed a pair of high top pink sandals with flowers on them and wouldn’t let go. She was also the biggest shoe stealer, always clomping around the house in everyone else’s shoes, finding special joy in high heels. I know I should be focused on functional improvements and physical gains, but I have to say that finding out about the shoes brought me the most joy today — pretty shoes with a Christmas dress is making me giggle with anticipation. God is so good!

Jayna was the first PT who worked with Abbie — we met her in the ICU. She was among the first to support our belief that Abbie was “in there” and called Speech Therapy to get Abbie working with switches even before her eyes were open. I told her this is the first “do-over” we’ve gotten. She saw, along with us, Abbie’s legs and feet transform the the well-toned, flexible ones belonging to an active toddler, to the restricted, misshapen, unusable ones belonging to a brave, but injured, warrior. Jayna spent 3 years in Japan and recently returned, so it seems a full-circle moment to me that she is with us as we begin this journey from “Start” again, with beautiful, flexible, healthy legs. And this time, things are only going to get better.

What a day!!

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