Monday, March 18, 2013

Righty Looking Like Lefty

It really is amazing to me how typical Allie seems these days. 

We were on the train this morning, and she was using her right hand almost as much as her left.  She turned around in her chair to say hi to the woman behind her and she put both hands (without prompting) on the top of the chair to pull herself up.  Then she pointed out the window to show the woman a car that was driving by; it took me a moment to notice that Allie was pointing with her right hand.  The woman was kind enough to talk with Allie and Allie blew her a kiss with Righty when we were leaving.  As we were walking out of the train station, she was touching the bumpy concrete wall with Righty as she walked and then pointed to the big escalator that we go up with Righty. 

It made me think: “If I didn’t know that she has issues with her hand, I wouldn’t know right now”. 

Sure, if you look you can see that her right hand isn’t as strong or versatile as her left, but I don’t think it would be the first thing someone notices.  It often takes me a moment to register which hand is which. 

Her constraint OT says that Allie’s leg and slight limp gives away her CP more than her arm does.  The PT thinks that Allie will be limp-free soon if she keeps up all her great progress.      

We play a hand game with the song “Open, Shut Them” (you can check the song out on YouTube here ).  The idea is that you open and close your hands in time with the lyrics and then clap.  We’ve been singing this song intermittently to Allie for months.  This past weekend, I sang it and she made the connection that she should open and close Righty too.  There is definitely a delay while she thinks about how to do it, but her right is maybe a half-second behind her left hand.  And when Righty opens for the song, it’s really open---thumb and pointer finger out.  Before this most recent round of constraint, she had very minimal ability to engage her thumb and forefinger. 

And, this is the last bragging note for the day: she crawled all the way down our hallway today, bearing weight on a perfectly open Righty.  She blows me away.

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