50% weight bearing… ??% stressed…100% GRATEFUL

The Bat-mobile at Sinai
Batman arrives at the RIAO. This is after we had the chance to see him in the lobby where he whispered in Nick’s ear “Get better ok”.
Super Hero and Doctor Hero Hugging!

With the summer of the “normal kid break” and the 7 screw plate coming to an end I am realizing just how stressful this has been and continues to be. Nicholas had a great visit with Dr. Standard yesterday. His arm looked well enough to leave the cast off and just get a splint. His leg was healed enough to go to 50% weight bearing. It’s a big step considering he has been hopping for what feels like the whole summer.

We’ve got to pick him up an additional splint to use while swimming! Swimming is going to feel so great. He can 100% weight bear in the pool. I can’t wait to see my boy moving freely and joyfully. Really can’t wait!

Comparing the Nick of this summer to the Nick of last summer I see a completely different kid. He has grown so much in so many ways. Physically he is like 20lbs heavier and so much taller. He’s almost up to my eyeballs! At nine years old that’s pretty tall. Emotionally he has matured as well. Maybe this is all normal. Since he’s my oldest this is all I know of mothering a nine year old.

This summer has stressed us all. Last night Nick started having pain in his arm which he said he felt where the break was. I was helping out on a web chat with Dr. Standard so I was able to let him know right then. Basically he told me to give him ibuprofen round the clock for a few days but if the pain persisted to call him tomorrow (meaning today).It was a hard night. Pain would have been ok I am sure but pain right where the bone broke frightened me. Nick and I were both up past midnight.

Today it seems that the pain only happens when he bends his arm and it is not only where the break was. His elbow was hurting today and we are thinking some of the pain is in his wrist. That would be normal. He’s not moved his wrist or elbow in like 6 weeks! But nothing about a broken arm feels normal to any of us. Nick is keyed up because one something goes wrong it is easy to imagine wrong stuff will continue!

At least Nick’s leg looked great on the films and it has not caused any pain. My one worry on that front is that when Nick started to put weight on it while using the walker he seems to turn his foot totally out to the side! UGH Not what we want to see. Yesterday it seemed like Dr. Standard had some concerns about Nicks knee but we wont know anything till we can do a standing x-ray at his next appointment in a month. Lengthening is a big strain on the his knee (his super knee surgery was in June ’11) and I imagine all the rest has been a strain as well. I am hoping he wont need another 8 plate or any other kind of intervention for a while but really hoping is silly. It is what it is already. It will be what it will be.

The fact is we planned this last lengthening when we did for 3 reasons. 1. Nick’s foot began to hurt. 2. Steven was loosing his job and we only had insurance for a few more months. 3. We wanted Nick to be done by summer time or at least by midsummer.

Reason number 3 was not so realistic. We did our best to make it happen and then life happened. Nick said to me “Mom you promised this wouldn’t be a bummer summer and it was”. Nothing SUCKS more than hearing that. At least I pointed out that it is not over yet and as home-schoolers our summer can continue!

We’re hoping to move to less stressed and by next month to more weight bearing. As hard as it has all been everything is ok. This all could have been much worse. We still have the best doctor and team looking after Nicks bones! Here we thought it was just the leg!

Yesterday was a great day at the RIAO. Batman was there. Truthfully my kids are not so much into Batman but it created a really fun vibe. Personally it made me happy to see all the happy kids and the hard working RIAO folks watching the happy kids. Nick was glad to get into the cast room for removal but when it came time to do it he was scared. Melinda the tech was so patient with him. She always is and we’ve spent a lot of our RIAO time with her this summer but this was unusual for Nick to be so upset yet she was easy going and got it done.

Then Nick was scared to get off the bed to go to xray and the tech said (I wish I could remember his name he is the least chatty guy but great all the same) “That’s ok I’ll just wheel him over”. Another instance of patience and kindness making all the difference. I was just not feeling calm myself and it was nice to not have to be the one to figure it all out and make it all ok.

So now we make sure Nick is not more than 50% weight bearing. We hope the arm pain goes away. We try to keep the arm safe. Maybe most importantly we try to have fun and find some cool water and swim. And of course focus on how darn lucky we are in so many ways. All this bone business might have made a bummer summer but we tried our best to make the most of it, and it was all fixable, and Nick still grew 6cm of new bone in his right leg. Even when it kind of fell apart he didn’t loose any of the length he worked so hard for.

The truth is Dr. Standard preserved the length. I don’t think that was a guarantee. At least from what I have read of others experiences with other doctors. Perspective is so valuable. I am trying to teach it to Nick in the kindest way possible. Not just to be happy because it could have been worse or because he’s better off than others but to look at how far he’s come. From my perspective it never ceases to amaze and my gratitude is always present (at least to some extent) even during our first and hopefully last bummer summer!

7-Screw Plate