Sunday, November 20, 2011

Better Late than Never

In the Summer, Raphaela had already taken her first steps but seemed hesitant to embrace the activity of walking over speed-crawling.  Concerned, our family doctor referred us for physical therapy, but as it happens with managed care, the first available appointment with a pediatric specialist was scheduled for today, approximately three months later, after Raphaela started officially walking.

While I see improvement in her stability and skill every day, I want Raphaela to receive a full work-up from an unbiased source;  it doesn't hurt, and I also need advice from the Childhood Development Center as to how to encourage Raphaela to feel more confident going up and down stairs.  Besides, it gives us the excuse to take a bus downtown, and my daughter loves busses and tractors, in fact any large moving vehicle is a source of great fascination.

Other than the cold and rain of our Israeli Winter, which made standing outside a bit prohibitive, Raphaela found walking through the center of town highly stimulating, said "hello" to everyone who walked by, and counted all the busses and taxis on the road.  The Childhood Development Center itself was far more impressive than I expected, we were treated by a bilingual, highly qualified PT in a bright room full of toys and balancing beams and trampolines.  Raphaela essentially had a gymboree room all to herself, and other than a few specific tests, the PT did not interrupt her play, but rather observed.

Today I learned the following: one, Raphaela's delay in walking may or may not have been caused by her pre-surgery breathing issues, combined with low-grade hypotonia.  Two, because Raphaela is such an active child, the hypotonia (though it remains in the system) should not affect her in any real way, for the rest of her life.  Three, given that she only started walking recently, she is "on track" and will catch up quickly. Four, Crocs are not the spawn of the Devil, just less preferrable footware.  Five, for all of her good intentions, the head nursery teacher must stop pressuring me and Raphaela, and should respect Raphaela's natural growth rate.

The PT gave me some exercises to do at home with Raphaela, to improve stair-climbing and jumping, but happily informed me that we do not need to return for extended visits.  On the way home, I treated Raphaela to a cookie, and she happily munched while looking outside the window of the bus, humming to herself.


Midlife Singlemum said...

Good to hear, the news and how it was delivered. I'm all for respecting the child's natural growth rate.

Commenter Abbi said...

Right on, wise PT woman. Unfortunately, this is one of the great truths about raising kids that you only really truly know after some experience.

Commenter Abbi said...

BTW, I had a gannenet and a dr. harrass me about my son's (admittedly terrible)eating habits. The dr. gave me a hafnaya for the eating disorder clinic at Alyn. We had a lovely morning getting checked out by a dr., psych, OT, nutritionist. Consensus: He's a picky eater, he'll probably grow out of it. They wrote it down on a nice piece of paper, which I copied and handed to the dr. and ganenet. No more harassment.