Friday, November 1, 2013

Turning point

And the trek through the mountains continues..........

Let's see, since last I wrote we have experienced the full gamut of emotions.  We went from completely ecstatic getting the casts off to extreme disappointment at the amount of pain he had afterwards then we went onto anger/sadness about checking into rehab.  From there we continued with the sadness after we checked in and were less than overwhelmed with our temporary "home" and I think in that was a bit of nerves about the days to come, then onto the evaluations we go.  Thursday morning rolls around rather quickly after a short night on sleep and he is already worked up about PT coming in first thing in the morning.  He had a lot of pain in his ankles but that didn't stop PT from doing their thing.  Within a matter of 20 minutes she had him sitting up on his own and then onto his feet (with her help of course).  It was at that moment that I knew it didn't matter what the room looked like or how comfortable (or not) my bed was but that we were in the best place possible for Cam to have a shot at a successful rehabilitation!  Cam was still a bit unsure at this point if he was "all in" on this place and the plan for rehab.  They convinced him to participate in Trick-or-Treating, which he was not at all excited about, but he faked it good :)  He saw lots of therapists and kids in a variety of different places in the rehab process and I think it helped to open his eyes, and mine, a bit to what we had going for us.  Cam has done this before and has a good shot at walking again, some kids are not so fortunate but they were all so happy and it warmed my heart to see how caring and dedicated all of the therapists were.  No matter how much "work" it was they ensured that every single kid got to experience the same thing and hit every floor with bags and buckets in hand.  Simply amazing!
 
On our way to RIC, not so happy.

Sitting up for the first time since surgery

Cam feeling his weight on his feet for the first time in a long time!    
His amazing Halloween costume

Cam raising himself up on the tilting table

We had yet another rough night on sleep, they have been giving him some melatonin which seems to help him fall asleep but the knee immobilizers are still pretty cumbersome and uncomfortable so he is awake a lot.  This morning we woke up and got the day started bright and early with PT at 8:30am.  It was off to the tilting table to get some weight on those legs, ankles and feet.  The therapist was quick to tell me to go get my coffee and relax so she could see how much she could get out of him without mom around :(  Much to my surprise when I got off the elevator he was almost all the way up and chatting away with her so I stood back and watch the rest of the session from a distance.  Cam had no idea I was behind him and on more than one occasion I could feel my eyes welling up with tears and had to pull myself together.  You have no idea what it feels like to see your child go from so much pain and struggle to finally be in a standing position carrying on a conversation with a smile on his face.  I didn't care if he was strapped to a table that was helping him or not.  All I saw was my baby boy on his own two feet standing tall.  He worked hard all hour long and then came back to the room to relax before another session.  

We had new inpatient orientation followed by what was to be the most amazing moment of rehab we've ever experienced.  This is where the light bulb turned on for Cam and his whole attitude and outlook was forever changed.  His goals are set high and determined to leave here doing WAY more without assistance than ever before!  So here's how it went........

He had a new therapist named V(going to only go by letters for privacy) who was a guy, brownie points with Cam right off the bat.  Then he started asking Cam about comic books and super heroes, now he is in!  I sent them on their way so I could get cleaned up for the day as the morning was quite busy.  Shortly after I get out of the shower there is a knock and the door and I opened it only to find Cam standing up in a wheeled stander, and not just any wheeled stander.  This was the same exact stander we tried to fit him for before we decided on surgery and Cam could not even get close to being able to stand up in it..........and now he is in it comfortably, standing tall, legs straight AND wheeling himself down the hallway!!!!!!!!  Now the tears are welling up for sure, but I 'm trying not to embarrass him totally so I suck it up and just smile on through.  I quickly sent them on their way so I could gather myself, inside I was jumping up and down like a little kid on Christmas.  I was so excited I forgot to get a picture or video until he was almost around the corner, but I got a little video that I will attach so everyone can enjoy the moment with me.  When they returned from their session I had my Cam back, he was happy, excited, positive, determined and sitting up in his chair with the legs down and a big ol' smile on his face!!!!!  I haven't felt this good in a very long time.  
video


Later on in the day the Psychologist came in to do her thing and he talked openly and was very positive about everything she asked.  He was very chatty and answered all of her questions thoroughly, he even volunteered information and stories (now that's Cam!)  He then had OT which at first he wasn't looking forward to because he was a bit sore from all the PT work that he did, but once he got going it was great.  He sat up in a chair, crossed his feet, raised his legs and even took off and put on his own shoes.  I know these things may seem small to some of you that read this, but in our world that we have lived for the last year these things are huge!  Cam had really taken a nosedive in being able to do things for himself and to watch him push his way through some of the pain to reach the end result all on his own was incredible.  They then took off in his chair and went off to work out his arms and he once again returned smiling from ear to ear.  He now says that he really really likes PT and OT and that this place is pretty awesome.  Tonight we had dinner together in the dining room, took a nice long hot shower and now he is relaxing and getting ready for bed.  He is very tired tonight but says he feels good about what he accomplished today, as do I.  

Cam has set his goals high and I have no doubts that he will do everything in his power to achieve them.  His determination and spirit are back and I LOVE IT!!!!!  This weekend we will get to go out on pass a little bit and get him some fresh air and good food. 

I stuck my flag in the ground at the top of Mt. Everest today, I intend to stay there with him as long as I possibly can and watch it wave in the wind.  We are so blessed to have an amazing support system of family, friends and even friends of friends and I hope that you too will continue to stand with us because this is one heck of a journey!
SMILE :)

Your hardest times often lead to the greatest moments of your life. Keep the faith. It will all be worth it in the end.

 

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