We woke up this morning with a little bit of apprehension. Today was the day of “THE BIG DOCTORS APPOINTMENT”. It’s been the same with every appointment with Mike’s orthopedic doctor. The same ol’ questions / feelings / concerns / nervousness – and throw in a dash of hope. It can all be summed up into a common theme. “I hope everything is ok”…
We loaded up and headed out. Walked in to the doctors office and signed in. We waited a short time before the nurse called us back to “the examination room”. Oh – the memories. Memories of being in this room while they put casts on our 16 day old baby. Memories of being back a week later to cut them back off with a Stryker saw and put on the next set of casts. After his series of casts – which all went from the top of his hips to the tip of his toes – I can’t believe that he didn’t get even one nick from the saw.
The memories of getting the first brace. Meeting with the orthotics specialists. Pressure spots developing on Mike’s feet. Lots and lots of crying (mostly by Mike, but some by mom and dad too…). Sitting in this very examination room and discussing the tenotomy surgery on a 9 week old baby. General anesthesia? On a 9 week old? A timely message from a fellow blogger who has a child with clubbed feet (Thank you JoAnne! You’ll never know how much that little message about the tenotomy set our minds at ease…).
Checking in to Children’s Hospital. Watching them roll our son – our little 9 week old baby – through the double door with the bright red letters “SURGERY”. Waiting and waiting and waiting in that little waiting room…
More casts. More Stryker saw (I can’t believe he still has all 10 toes!). Then more of the dreaded brace.
No – I can’t say my memories of this room are especially fond ones. But with each visit, the news kept getting progressively better and better. Perhaps today, that trend would continue.
In comes Dr. Crawford. A quick examination of his feet. It all goes much quicker when all you have to take off is his socks! The usual bending, twisting, turning. Then the prognosis…
Dr. Crawford looked up and smiled (did he just smile? He never smiles… Is this a good? Is he smiling because he is getting ready to give us bad news? Trying to soften the blow? Is he trying to…)
“Mike’s feet are absolutely excellent!” (WHEW!)
He went on to say that Mike had more maneuverability and flexibility in his feet than some non-clubbed foot kids. Things were CERTAINLY looking up!
We still have to wear the brace at night until he starts walking. Given that Mike is already pulling himself up with no problems and has begun a little “furniture surfing”, Dr. Crawford’s estimates (both as a dad and an orthopedic surgeon) – he (Mike – not Dr. Crawford) should be toddling around in about a month. Once that starts – we can stop using the brace altogether!
And that is what we call “GOOD NEWS”! And while that was certainly the bulk of the good news – we also received another little tidbit of good news. Dr. Crawford told us that the chance of Mike’s feet regressing are “essentially zero”. We now only have to see Dr. Crawford for “routine checkups” – when Mike turns 18mo, then yearly until he turns 5 just to make double sure that there is no regression.
Really? I’ve only got to sit in the little examination room 5 more times? Really? Seriously? AND there’s a chance that he could be out of the brace by Christmas? Now THAT’S what I call a successful visit to the orthopedic doctor!