Thursday, October 24, 2013

Checking In With Georgia

A lot has changed since I wrote last year's post about Georgia showing zero interest in clothes or fashion.  (Click HERE to read that post)  And I'm not just referring to her height.  This summer, for the first time ever, Georgia enjoyed back to school clothes shopping, where she spent a great deal of time looking through racks of clothes and selecting pieces that she liked.  This wasn't meant to be a blog post about Georgia and her latest fashions, but when I went through my latest photos of Georgia to use in this update post, I found that they were all pictures of her posing in various outfits.  I guess it makes sense, then, to include Georgia's new-found fashion sense in her Update.  Her taste has matured past pinks and purples and has settled nicely into a black phase and just this morning, she told me that she'd like to own a pair of Doc Martens.  I couldn't be more proud.

Georgia is enjoying fifth grade.  She still loves to read and likes most academic subjects.  Probably her favorite thing about fifth grade is the weekly organizer that she was given to write her homework assignments in.  Georgia is a disaster when it comes to keeping her room clean, but she is very organized (just like me).  I once found her alphabetizing all her books on her bookshelf.

Georgia is still loving soccer and specifically, her club team.  Which is a good thing since she has three practices and two games a week.  

And believe it or not, those three practices and two games a week are the least amount of activity done by a child in our family and there are times when Gordy and I worry that Georgia should be doing more.

But then we come to our senses.

The biggest news in the Life of Georgia is that we spent four hours in two different locations of Children's Hospital Boston this week, checking in with Georgia's orthopedic surgeon and making plans for what hopefully will be the final chapter in Georgia's life with Amniotic Band Syndrome.

I've already written about the day that Georgia was born and how we were told that she had Amniotic Band Syndrome and would never walk.  Someday I will have to write an entire post on Georgia's two surgeries that followed that pronouncement and the two months that she spent in a wheelchair and the two years she spent in physical therapy.  It all feels so long ago and another lifetime ago.

But for now, I will tell you that it had always been our plan for Georgia to undergo a third surgery when she reached puberty, to stop the growth plate on her longer leg so that her shorter leg could catch up and finally allow her legs to become an even pair.  That time is strangely here - or rather the TIME is here, but we are now less certain about whether the surgery is necessary.

Georgia's doctor was amazed to see how successful Georgia's last surgery (a heel-cord lengthening procedure which made it possible for Georgia to rest her right foot, flatly on the ground) really was.  Yes, her leg is still a half-inch shorter than the other and yes, her right foot is still a full size and a half smaller than the left, but the range of motion she gets in her ankle is phenomenal and her back is no longer shifting to make up the difference.  

We have been faithful to the point of obsession in making Georgia wear her orthodic lift in her shoe / soccer cleats and while the doctor didn't mention that per se, I'm sure Georgia's physical therapist would agree that the lift played an important part in keeping Georgia's gait perfect and her back straight.  And we are always reminding her to walk with her heel first (which is a big deal, since it took roughly a year to convince Georgia that people didn't walk toe-heel, toe-heel as she was accustomed).

Georgia is on the border-line for needing this last surgery.  Her leg length difference is one that can be lived with but it is also great enough that the surgery would be a help.  Georgia had another scanogram (x-rays of her legs, pelvis and hands) on Wednesday and she will have another set taken in six months. A decision will be made after the doctor has all the facts and after the four of us - Gordy, Me, Georgia and the doctor - talk through what having or not-having the next surgery will mean.  

We'll be sure to keep you all updated, too.  And of course, if you have any thoughts/opinions, we'd be happy to hear them.  Just leave a comment.

Georgia also got a two new lifts made while she was at the hospital.  She wore the shorter version in her Chuck Taylors this morning and reported that it felt great.  Her old lift had been rather worn-out and this new one is a much more accurate correction.  

While spending four hours in the hospital is not the most enjoyable way to spend time, it was productive (well, if you ignore the two hours we waited to see the doctor!) and we now have a plan, however tentative.  I'd say it was a good week.


Lisa Witherspoon said...

You know, I have read your post about Georgia's condition, but when I see your pictures of her I don't svn notice it! I;m glad she i doing so well with it and I'm sorry you are facing such a tough decision.

I love that she has developed a fashion sense and wish she could talk some sense into my Rachel! :-)

Martha said...

Thanks, Lisa - we don't notice her leg difference either. It's going to be a tough decision, that's for sure.

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