Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Astute Mum? Me?

On Monday I took Joseph for his long awaited appointment at Manchester Children's Hospital to see a consultant about his walking.

Unlike many of his other appointments, I wasn't nervous. I think now Joseph is 3 I am far too busy managing him to have much time to mither about appointments. A little tiny part of me was a little concerned that perhaps something had been missed with his hips, but not too worried.

I love Manchester Children's Hospital. It's shiny and new, which helps, but its very laid out, and the waiting room for outpatients has lots of toys, and even volunteer playworkers. It's a fantastic place. I suspect my creepy child does have some sort of memory of being there, as he looked upstairs and said "please don't make me go up there again". Joseph had hernia surgery here when he was 7 months old....

We saw a really lovely consultant, who spent a lot of time talking to me, and watching Joseph. The first thing she did when we entered the room was obtain another box of toys, as she quickly realised that Joseph was a very busy little chap who needs a lot of stimulation. She started by asking lots of questions. She asked if I had any problems with his expressive language, to which I replied "he's a little too expressive at times - which she was soon to find out!

He wasn't that impressed with being examined, which helped show off his sentence structure "I can't take my shoes and socks off, its raining, and I want to go and have something to eat instead". The doctor was very impressed!

She managed to have a quick look, and thankfully, as expected, Joseph does not have any spooky hip dysplasia, which I have to admit crossed my mind briefly. He is very hypermobile, and can quite easily suck his toes, which he never did as a baby but certainly does now (ewww I know where those toes have been....)

I explained that Joseph had never really had interventions, that I've just let him develop at his own speed, with the occasional physio visit and orthotic visit just to make sure he is on the right track. The consultant asked what clinical experience I had or whether I was just an expert premmie mum!

She said that my decisions had been very astute, and she was very pleased with his progress. She said unless he was falling and hitting himself, losing teeth, bruising, bleeding she would be more than happy just to let him continue on.

I felt enormous relief. I guess any parent, whether you baby is premmie or term, has no idea what is right or wrong, and just makes it up as they go along.

When you are a member of the international premmie community and hear tales of early intervention, regular physiotherapy, occupational therapy involvement, you wonder whether the "hands off and leave em to it" approach is the right one.

Joseph was very pleased to get to the end of his appointment, and most excited to run through the puddles to "the cafe".

I am so proud of my little boy, he's a star!

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