Most of you who visit this blog know that the DHubby and I have two children, both now in their early Thirties. Laura, also known as PhysicsDaughter in some venues, has had a long road to travel insofar as her health and well-being. She was nearly 3 days old when she crashed--an emergency quickly followed by her transfer to the NICU at Children's Hospital of Cincinnati, surgery for a serious heart defect, and a complete change in all our plans. She has battled many chronic health problems and, after complications during her second heart surgery caused ischemic spinal cord damage, she has dealt with physical disability since the age of 7 months.
We can't say it was easy, but it wasn't all gloom and doom, either. Laura was precious--a fractious, difficult baby, but at the same time responsive, alert, and determined. Joy was as much a part of our lives as medical issues and physical therapy were, I assure you.
So--I'm an Old Softie, and sentimentality has led me to collect quite the battery of mementos and souvenirs. I get them out and reflect, shed a few tears perhaps, and feel the happiness.
But now we need to downsize. As with the April Easter Egg Tree, I've been substituting photographs preserved in the blog; memories no longer tangible, but just as much loved.
Here is one more:
Laura's spinal nerves were affected from the level of the aorta and all points south, with the right side suffering the most damage. Physical therapy was augmented, eventually, by bracing. Laura, extremely active and impressively stubborn, kept trying to stand and to walk. These are the set of braces she had on when she succeeded in taking her first unassisted steps. (They are switched; the one on your left is the right orthosis.) She was about two years old.
I told you I was mushy!
When Laura was last here, she was waiting for new (considerably more modern) orthoses to be delivered. I gave her these and suggested that the wonderful new orthotist might enjoy seeing them. They were quite a hit.....and now join a little 'museum' collection of devices at the medical center. They have a new home, but a permanent place in my heart.