This week Rebeka experienced her first Friday night football game. Alayna danced at halftime with the Knightline, Nate was introduced with the sixth through eighth grade football players. Benji ran wild behind the stands like he usually does, while Clay and I chatted/watched the game and Rebeka got busy eating a bag of skittles and watching all the activity with wide eyes.
This week she also experienced her first time on a swing. She screamed, both excited and terrified by the feeling in her belly. First time on a slide. Screamed some more. Had to coax her down the first time. More screams, and hysterical laughing, and then she was ready to slide again. We got to the neighborhood park via a jog stroller a friend loaned us, a huge blessing as the weather has turned a bit cooler and we like to be outside and mobile. Meredith experienced her first four mile jog with 40+ pound Rebeka in the stroller. We both survived.
Rebeka took her first trip to the hair salon (thank you Natalie), and Meredith got her first crash course in how to take care of that kinky hair,which is coming in fast.
She also took her first ride on the Zilker train (thank you again, Natalie).
It’s been a big week for Rebeka. Today she got her fourth cast, and today is a day for celebration. When we put the first cast on, her doctor said he would be able to tell after the third cast whether or not we should proceed. If the foot wasn’t responding to the casts, then we would be done.
But the foot has responded, and we’re moving forward. Hooray, sing praise, do a little dance. Rebeka continues to be amazed each time we take off a cast and see the latest and greatest improvements. She scrubs it hard in the tub, examines it closely, pulls on the toes, and points out to us the things she thinks have changed.
Today, our doctor was very proud of his latest and greatest revelation. It’s inspiring to know that he thinks of her often, trying to figure out the best way to help her. The task before him was to put Rebeka in a device that will turn her foot even more. The casts have been doing this, but to a lesser degree. To really get the foot turned, she needs a long cast. But long casts are usually not soft casts, and soft casts are wonderful because you don’t need a saw to cut them off. Long leg casts stink because they make you so immobile, and uncomfortable, the knee fixed at an angle all the time.
Our doctor is kind enough to take this all into account and try to come up with a better solution. He decided to attach a soft cast on her calf to a hinge that is fixed on her knee, eliminating the need for more cast material up her thigh and enabling her to have some mobility. The problem: no leg hinges in her size. The solution, use an elbow hinge! It’s a nifty little device. Watching the doctor and the technician figure it all out was like watching little boys playing legos. They were very proud of themselves, and we were so very grateful they took the time and energy to come up with a great solution.
At night we’ll fix the hinge at 90 degrees, but she has free range during the day. We now have some bulky bits of velcro on her thigh to deal with. It proves persnickety with bathroom maneuvers, but they are infinitely better than a cast. A long leg cast may still be in her future, but we’ll try this way first. Wait and see. We celebrated another successful doctor’s visit with our established routine, some “fritas” (French fries). This time at Mighty Fine. And because it was such a momentous occasion, moving forward and all, we indulged with an orange Fanta as well.