Sunday, May 31, 2009

Rainbows and Care Bears and lollipops.

I will be the first to admit that this blogging thing is hard. 
That sounds so annoyingly stupid (Wah! Typing out a few thoughts and posting a picture is too tough! Wah!), but, in my opinion, it's the truth. I had a journalism professor whose catch phrase was "know stuff," so I try to absorb as much information as I can which includes news blogs, sports blogs, gossipy-celeb-rag blogs as well as the blogs put out by cousin Sarah and my sister-in-law, Kathy. It's ridiculous to try and keep up with the professionally run sites as they generally employ teams of people to churn out multiple posts on a daily basis that are edited, cropped and, for the most part, informative and thoughtful. But I can't even measure up to two people in my own family. The reason being, they are two of the most optimistic, generous and all-around nice people I've ever had the pleasure to be around, and it shows through so clearly in their posts. Everything is rainbows and Care Bears and lollipops. I love it. Unfortunately, it's just not me. 
Oh, I've given it my best. I've made honest attempts at adding a little syrup to my literary diet. But no matter how well I start, it eventually spirals down into some curse-laden rant like I'm Yosemite Sam and Bugs Bunny just tricked me into falling off a cliff. Again. 
What was the point of this? I don't know. You don't even care, do you? Tell us about the kid! You shut your mouth when you're talking to me!
Young Emily continues to develop at a rapid rate. Her crawling is getting quicker all the time. If you leave her in the family room to head to the kitchen, it's only a few seconds before she's sitting on the floor behind you. Quite proud of herself, she is. And rightly so! 
She also really, really wants to walk. Not only is she pulling herself to a stand all the time (recent headline at "Edge of Table Victorious Over Toddler"), she's now making legitimate attempts to climb out of the pack-n-play. I do NOT see this ending well. 
She's also getting some play time with other kids. Sunday of Memorial Day weekend took us up to Cory and Vicki's annual shindig where apparently everyone has kids now. It was interesting to watch her interact with those around her same age as well as being able to gauge my own ability to just step back and watch. She, of course, was great. She sat nicely on the blanket in the middle of the yard while playing with whatever toys were available, even ignoring the one-year old who felt it necessary to repeatedly bonk her on the head with a plastic block (I think of the Homer Simpson quote, "Urge to kill...rising...rising...").  
And now, here we sit just a shade over 27 hours away from our meeting with Dr. DeLuca. If you'll recall, we originally had scheduled an appointment with him to get Ems fitted for her first prosthetic device on July 6th. I'm not exactly sure what this will look like or what will happen. I would imagine we'll get an exact measurement on how large the discrepancy is at this point, and he'll then put together some kind of contraption that will make it substantially easier for her to stand/walk. As I mentioned previously, this kid really, really wants to walk. This will be just what she needs. 
Perhaps it's times like this where I realize why I won't be able to make my blog the super-sweet family blog. Even though Emily was perfectly content while that boy smacked her in the head, I could not help fast-forwarding to an age where my beautiful little girl comes home crying because a classmate made fun of her leg. Even though Ems has already displayed more personality than half my 7th grade classes, I am beyond nervous that some jackass kid will feel the need to try and embarrass my daughter in order to boost his/her own pathetic level of self-worth. I shouldn't worry about it, but I do. I teach middle school. Everyone of us can think back to our own experiences. We all knew that kid. That kid is always there. My only hope is that she is smart enough, strong enough, mature enough and quick-witted enough to handle it. 
I realize this is the same process every parent experiences. We all hope our kid is the super-intelligent, popular, good-looking captain of the (fill in the blank) team. Over time, most gradually realize their child might not fall into that top one percent. Emily, however, got dealt her first set-back right from the jump. 
At times like this, when looking for something to make sense of it all, it's my brother Pete's voice I hear. "God had to give Emily that leg just to keep it fair for everyone else."
Have a lollipop.


SA said...

I came across your blog once and for some reason I had the urge to check up on your daughter this morning. First of all, I've been through 3 lengthenings, clubfoot correction, knee reconstruction... myself. I am not going to lie to you, it is not easy. Yes, there was a lot of curiosity from classmates when I was younger, a little bit of teasing (not too much though, maybe because I'm girl?).

Now, I am 23 and if I am wearing pants and closed shoes, no one can tell I have fibular hemimelia. I can't wear sandals or heels because of my remaining foot deformity (non-treatable as of yet) and I have post-lengthening scars, but that's about it. It will frustrating for Emily (esp. when she hits her teens), but I'm sure she will be fine with the support of her loving parents. You made the right decision by not amputating and she will thank you for it one day!

p.s. my mom tells me that I was extremely active as a toddler despite leg length difference and clubfoot. So be prepared for more action from her :)

Tim Tredwell said...

Thanks for the note, SA. Sometimes I need a reminder that we're headed in the right direction.