Friday, April 6, 2012

Mobility Envy



I’ve noticed that lately Ian has become very aware of his little sister’s increasing mobility. She just turned one this week, and while she isn’t walking yet, she is scooting around on her butt to get what she wants as well as pulling up and standing at the coffee table in our living room. Last week she was practicing walking while holding onto my hands and Ian immediately pointed to her, then to himself, meaning he wanted to do what she was doing. Even with his AFOs on, he can’t lock his knees to bear weight on his legs, so I basically just had to hold him under the arms and let his feet drag on the floor. He was kind of satisfied by this, but I could see that he could tell it wasn’t the same as what he’d seen his sister do.

Ian has always been very unmotivated when it comes to mobility. As a baby, when he was on the floor he never wanted to roll or commando crawl with his arms. We’d bribe him with all kinds of toys, but he’d just lie there like “I don’t want it that much”. When he did finally roll over it was only to get off his tummy, which he hates to be on even to this day. Justin and I ended up just carrying him around because he’d just stay put forever otherwise. He didn’t move around our house on his own until we got him a loaner wheeled-stander at 18 months. Even now that he has his wheelchair he doesn’t really tear around the house, preferring instead to sit at a table and play. That’s just what he’s used to.

Enter baby sister. She scoots, she stands, and soon she’ll be walking. Obviously Ian sees people walk all the time. He goes to school with tons of other kids who all walk while he rolls his wheelchair. It never seemed to bother him one iota until it was his own baby sister. Somehow, seeing her walk, even though she couldn’t do it on her own, flipped a switch in him. Suddenly he thought, “if she is doing that, I should be doing that too”. It’d be great if Lydia’s development helped Ian be more motivated to move on his own. He’ll be getting HKAFOs, hopefully in the kinda-near future, so maybe one day soon it will be him walking while holding onto my hands.

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