Saturday, February 25, 2012

Great News About Faith's Hips

It's Saturday morning and after a busy, somewhat stressful work week, I can finally take a moment to enjoy a nice cup of coffee while doing some writing. Sitting here, I am reflecting on the wonderful news we received on Wednesday. Faith's left hip has not pulled out any further from its socket!

On Tuesday, Rob took Faith to get her x-rays and then on Wednesday he took her to see the physiotherapist. Upon reviewing Faith's x-rays of her hips, the doctor could not quite believe what he was seeing. The hip looked like it was in the same position as it was five months ago. He was in such disbelief that he sent Rob and Faith back downstairs for another round of x-rays. Faith had to stay on the table in case the doctor wanted more shots taken. She laid there as patiently as she could for about 30 minutes before the doctor finally called them back upstairs.

The doctor may have been befuddled but we know that God is working in Faith's body and we give Him all the praise!

Even though her hips have remained stable, the doctor pointed out that getting the baclofen pump could still help Faith. Now that she is eating more and gaining weight, we feel better about going ahead with the decision. We will keep you posted!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Time Flies in February

It seems that the month of February always goes by so quickly. Maybe it is because January is usually the coldest month of the year and the month just crawls; then when February finally comes, spring doesn't seem so far away. This year, with the milder weather, January wasn't so bad and February is going by even faster than usual. Another factor to a fast-flying February, at least for our family, is that both mine and Rob's birthdays are in February and it is also the month Faith gets to celebrate one of her favorite holidays - Valentines Day.

Another fun time for Faith this month was having her 2nd grade program at school. She had so much fun singing along to all the songs and jingling her bell (all the kids got to take turns playing an instrument and hers was the bell) that she wanted to have another program! It was so good to see her truly relaxed and not even having a tough time with startling when people clapped. And although she herself didn't have any lines, she was saying the lines along with the other kids when it was their turn to say their lines.
Faith jingling her bell
Faith joins in the singing with some of the other 2nd graders
This month we also had a parent-teacher conference which was turned into a mini-IEP meeting with Faith's teacher, her special education teacher, her therapists and the school principal. There are still some concerns with her having the ability to read from left to right but there are more ideas to try. Some really good news we got was that before Christmas, Faith was only getting between 40 and 60 percent on her trials with sight words and numbers 1-20. During the first three weeks of January though, she was getting between 80-100 percent on the same words and numbers. She continues to do well driving her power chair and is also getting good at using her buttons for her laptop at school.

Another area she is making progress is physical therapy. In January she received botox and that, along with much prayer, has enabled Faith to take 130 steps in her gait trainer. At home, she is asking me and Rob to help her take steps. We hold her up and support her while she "walks" from the living room into the bathroom or the living room to the kitchen. She is very good at using her right leg then her left and repeating the process until she gets to where she wants to go. Although it's tough on mommy's back, it's great for Faith!

This afternoon we will be meeting two students from the University of Mary who are studying nursing/physical therapy. Faith seems excited to meet them and if she's up to it, we are going to take her curling. She was up at 6:30 this morning so we'll see what her energy level is like.

Next week, she has hip x-rays and an appointment with her physiotherapist. I'm sure the words baclofen pump will come up again but hopefully (we are praying very hard) her x-rays show her hips are stable. We will also be celebrating Daddy's birthday next week and before we know it, February will be over and a very busy Spring will be upon us!
Another one of Faith's favorite activities is doing SKYPE with our friend, Kimberly

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Faith On Ice - Our Curling Adventure

What is curling you might ask? The only thing I really knew about curling was that in the Olympics, it was the sport where they use a broom to furiously brush the ice in order to make that round thing go in a certain direction. Then one day Faith brought a flier home from school that her physical therapist sent along announcing wheelchair curling at the Capital Curling Club (I had no idea Bismarck had their own curling club).

Faith on Ice!
Honestly, I wasn't too sure about it but Faith seemed like she really wanted to try it. She was mostly excited that she would get to go on the ice (must be the Canadian in her!) I, however, was not excited to get on the ice and was glad there were going to be volunteers to help Faith.

I'm not sure of all the terms (although my sister-in-law tried to explain it to me the night before we went) but basically one volunteer helped Faith hold a stick thing which they clamped on to a "rock" and then pushed her chair to help her move her rock. There was also something about a hogline but I can't quite remember.And by the way, they don't really use that broom thing in wheelchair curling.

Those rocks weigh 45 pounds each!
They practiced for a while then eventually formed three groups with two teams of two players for each team. Faith was the only little girl there but she certainly didn't care. She had a blast and quite often asked the volunteers, "Is it my turn yet?"

The event was put on a by a nonprofit organization called "Dreams in Motion" who try to get people with mobility challenges together here in Bismarck to engage in various sporting events. Faith is definitely looking forward to going curling again next week!

Faith tries to perfect her technique!