Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Road to Freedom

John's check-up on Tuesday was very good. We met the doctor who has taken over the IRP program in Omaha and we really like him, just like we were told we would ;) We have watched through John's years that every change of doctor, done either by choice or force, has been a change for the better. This time we got to go from one great doctor to another and since we are confident that God works all things together for the good of those that love Him we are confident that this change is going to be a positive one!

The best part of any trip to Omaha is spent with friends. This time we just got to visit with the Baker's long enough to have a delicious supper, hang out and visit until the kids needed to go to bed and then headed into Omaha as John's appointments were very early. If you've ever thought that you couldn't eat greens, well you should try Charity's bacon fried kale, it convinced Mark and I both that we could learn to love these greens. No one wanted to quit visiting and so by the time their exhausted kids went to bed and our exhausted kid was loaded into the jeep it was quite late.

John slept all the way to Omaha, he was still asleep when dad released him from his car seat and gently set him and his monkey down into a wheel chair. He barely stirred as we walked through the hospital and never woke even when we put him in bed and slept peacefully through the night. John has never been able to do this, it seemed like such a normal kid thing, as Mark and I both have memories of being little and going to sleep in one place and waking up somewhere else, often miles and miles from where we had been.

We were so amazed to be out of clinic at 9:15am, usually an 8:30am appointment means that we are out of clinic sometime before noon, so this was really a shocker. A few errands in town, an uneventful trip home, a few errands in Marshall and we were thankfully home again to get ready to leave the next morning.

Yesterday was John's appointment at Seating Clinic, a clinic especially developed for just exactly what it sounds like. It addresses car seats, special chairs, wheel chairs and the like and yesterday we were there to talk about John's power chair. After seeing John in the chair again everyone was convinced that he was definitely cognitively capable of handling a power chair, then it was a decision of what chair would best serve him. We had been looking at a chair that lowers the seat pretty close to the ground, but wanting to wait until the updated version came out that had the blue tooth technology capabilities. After watching John and thinking about his mobility limitations we all came to the conclusion that it wouldn't really be any easier or harder for him to get into a regular chair than it would be for him to get into a lowered chair, lol, he's short enough that even with the lowered chair he will have to stand up to get into it. So we were able to start the process for him to have a power chair with all the technological advantages that we wanted him to have and not have to wait until later next year some time for him to get it. If all goes well he should have it in 90 days from yesterday, which gives Mark and I time to get a chair carrier for the back of the jeep. Thankfully we don't have to get a new vehicle right now!

I have actually been the hold out on getting John a chair, I've been worried that it will make him want to walk less. Then I got to really thinking about what a power chair would mean, it would mean that he could enjoy the whole zoo, under his own power, getting to choose which thing he looks at for a long time and which he goes past quickly. More than that though it would mean that he could move around the house by his own determination, not having to cry/fuss/holler from the other room that someone needed to come and get him, and not having to sit where mom and dad chose, or just where he could get to from our chosen spot. He could even go to church and come home under his own power, with me walking with him of course. He could even go all the way down to the park to play. The ramifications of a power chair are amazing me at the moment. The rehab doctor who is ordering it told us that the biggest change we will see is that no longer will we always have to accommodate our lives to John, but that he will learn to accommodate his life to ours. I see what she means in the little practical day to day things that we do, and I can't wait to see what neat things John decides to do on his own road to freedom!

Oh and here is a picture of his ticket to ride ...

No comments: