Thursday, May 15, 2014

Day 3 without the cast

Allie's favorite KKI physical therapy activity is definitely biking.  Whenever I ask her what she's most excited about, it's biking.  When I ask what she liked best about her day, it's biking.  She got to ride the orange bike today instead of the usual red bike and it made her day.

As soon as she rounded the corner into the hallway where I sit, she started yelling "I'm riding the orange bike Mommy!  Get a picture!  Send it to Gama! Take a picture of me on the orange bike!  I'm wearing a helmet!!!"  Have I mentioned how much her language has taken off?  She can articulate whole thoughts now and have real conversations about things that happened to her.  It's really cool.

They biked to the library so she could read a Curious George book and on her way back through the hallway to the gym she continued her shouting "I'm still on the orange bike Mommy!  Look at my helmet!  I read a book in the library.  Now, I'm back on the orange bike!"

By the time Allie makes it half-way down the hallway, all the other loitering parents are cracking up.  She loves the bike so much.

In addition to the bike, Allie is doing really well.  She pulled off all the stickers on a sheet by herself in the car today.  She held the sheet with Righty and peeled all of them off with Lefty.  This was the first time I've seen her successfully do this herself and she was really proud.  She also helped get herself dressed this morning by putting on her own pull-up and shorts.

The therapists at KKI are really good at making the kids feel good about what they're doing.  In all my hallway conversations with other parents, this seems to be one commonality that all the kids share.  One mom today told me that her son was resistant to using his impaired arm but, since starting with KKI, he's gotten really proud to show off what he can do.  I'm not sure if it is all the encouragement and praise that the therapists shower on the kids for trying or if showing kids how to do some things that they didn't think they could do before builds confidence to try new things or if it's something else entirely.  Regardless, it's impressive. It takes a great group of people to make wearing a cast and only using an impaired limb fun.  I feel extremely lucky that we found this program and that we happen to live within driving distance of it.

As her PT noted yesterday as Allie was shouting "I LOVE KKI!!!!" in the pool, she (and we) have really become walking advertisements for the program.  Looking back, it is still surprising to me how much resistance we got when we first started thinking about joining the program for the first time.  We had so many therapists and doctors tell us that Allie was too young for the program, that it would breed resentment, and ultimately discourage her right hand use.  None of these things could be farther from what happened.  I think the constraint programs have been by far the most successful form of therapy for Allie and she really enjoys it.  It seems like a win for everyone.

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