Thursday, March 22, 2012

Never EVER give up: Smiley walks again

Six months ago I feared her walking days were over.  In the past five years Smiley has doubled in size and weight, her legs are now permanently bent - due to contractures - despite botox injections and daily stretching.  Last summer I had to accept that she could no longer use the small walker that she used to love.  She didn't seem to like its replacement either.  I sent it back to the school for her physiotherapist to adjust and try her in it again.  But the reports were not encouraging.  She was miserable apparently, and seemed unable to make any forward movement.


I don't know of any other wheelchair-bound 15 year olds who use walkers, so I was starting to wonder if she would ever walk again.  And I might have given up, if it wasn't for the encouragement of Barbara Boucher, whose blog posts are always a huge source of inspiration and information.  


Finally this morning I took action and went up to Smiley's school to see her physiotherapist.  Further adjustments were made to the new walker, and we hoisted Smiley into place.  At first she did not look too impressed, but with huge amounts of encouragement and praise she began to move her legs correctly.  Most of the forward motion happened because I was gently pulling the walker, but her legs followed, one at a time. We went up and down the gym and then, very daringly, out into the school corridor.  People came out of the classrooms to cheer her on.  She made it all the way down to her own classroom, absolutely delighted with herself.


Wobbly photo courtesy of happiness-induced camera shake!
Smiley is walking again :)

42 comments:

  1. Brilliant! Moments like that are incredible. So happy for her.

    Lucy x

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  2. I am really so happy for both you and Smiley! That's going to make such a difference to her self esteem, Go Smiley!

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  3. :) Sweet...and ...no never ever.

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  4. Fantastic picture!!! Great work!!!

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  5. There aren't enough words to say how absolutely wonderful and lovely and great and thrilling this is!! I am overjoyed for the both of you! What a fabulous post to start my day with. :)

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  6. Well done for never giving up and well done Smiley for making that huge effort to make her mam really happy & proud. Go Smiley!!

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  7. Go Smiley! Great to see you mobile again.

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  8. Oh C, that is wonderful news! Go Smiley :) What a superb day xx

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  9. How wonderful after not walkng for so long. A little miracle really. And good for you for not giving up.

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  10. Fabulous news and lovely to see Smiley up and mobile in her new walker :D Know how much it means xxx

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  11. @LUCEWOMAN - Thanks Lucy x

    @Lisa S - You're right, she looked really pleased with herself!

    @Þorgerður - It's hard sometimes, but you have to keep hoping and believing :)

    @Chris - Thank you!

    @kathleen - Thank you, thank you, thank you and I'm glad it started the day well for you :)

    @Jackie Braddish - She's great isn't she :)

    @Loraine Matthews - Yep it is, now to work out how to bring the new enormous walker to her clubs...

    @SAHMlovingit - it is :) xx

    @Midlife Singlemum - even the therapists weren't sure she'd be able, but she is!

    @Petunia - I can't tell you how pleased I am :D

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  12. I am so delighted for you and Smiley. Oh happy days! :)

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  13. That is so wonderful. yay Smiley and Mum for cheering her on. vix x

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  14. That is so wonderful. yay Smiley and Mum for cheering her on. vix x

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  15. That is so wonderful. yay Smiley and Mum for cheering her on. vix x

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  16. First bit of joy I have felt in 5 days. Smiley please keep making me smile. Xx

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  17. Brilliant brilliant news. She will never give up as long as she has you X

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  18. Brilliant! Brilliant!!! BRILLIANT! So happy for both of you. :-)

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  19. Such a wonderfully happy post... Moments like these are priceless

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  20. Wonderful :) Well done Smiley.

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  21. @Di - And I hope there will be more :)

    @vegemitevix - Glad it cheered you x

    @Hammie - I'll make sure she does xx

    @lyndylou - That's such a lovely thing to say x

    @Nan P. - it's fab isn't it? :)

    @Katie Kitchen - They absolutely are :)

    @Sally - Thank you, it is :)

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  22. Well done Smiley! And well done mum!

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  23. What JuliesMum said. The credit goes to Smiley and her Mum!

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  24. Oh my goodness. What absolutely fabulous news. You and Smiley are such fighters. Just look at her smiley face. So proud! xxxxxxx

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  25. Such wonderful news! Congratulations Smiley!

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  26. Fantastic news and I love the picture. Deb x

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  27. Oh my gosh! This brought a tear to my eye! I am so happy for you both!

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  28. I have just read this and now I have a big smile too! Well done to you and Smiley and you are quite right - giving up is NEVER an option.

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  29. This is fantastic news! What a fabulous picture. We can never give up, there's always hope and you've proved it!

    CJ x

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  30. Love it.....way to go Smiley XX

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  31. What fantastice news - let's hope she continues to make 'strides' forward!

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  32. look at smiley! she looks so happy and i'm sure that you were smiley too.
    hope and happiness are wonderful things
    x

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  33. So happy to hear this. Smiley indeed. Always worth giving things a try I think this says, even when you think they're not :)

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  34. @JuliesMum - Thank you!

    @Barbara - No really, you did help to make this happen x

    @Allforaleyna - she is VERY proud of herself xxxxx

    @Lisa | Mama.ie - Thank you!

    @Deb at aspieinthefamily - It would have been even better if I'd got it completely in focus, but still it's great to have :)

    @Lynsey S - Aww

    @Nanny Anne - I do need to remind myself of that sometimes tho'...

    @Crystal Jigsaw - Thanks so much Kathryn x

    @Helen - She's going alright :) xx

    @Tania Tirraoro - I hope so!

    @h0peful mummy - you have to have hope ((hugs))

    @Steph - that's it exactly x

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  35. What an uplifting post and I'm so pleased you found a solution to make her happy

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  36. Wonderful, a very encouraging post indeed. Sometimes it's easy to give up on something just because that's what is generally accepted as the norm. I'm so glad you persevered, just look at that smile!

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  37. Ahh that is just wonderful, so glad people came out to cheer on on, how that must have warmed your heart. Mich x

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  38. @Renata - so glad you found it encouraging :)

    @Michelle Twin Mum - everyone seems to just love her :D

    @Suburbia - It's great isn't it x

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  39. @Floortime Lite Mama - Thank you lovely x

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