Adelaide was supposed to be using a walker by Christmas. This was what we thought a couple years back. All the ‘best case scenario’ stuff pointed to her using a walker around her 3rd birthday. Well, we just celebrated our little doll, and that walker is still in storage. We actually had it out for months in her room. I wanted it ready at the drop of a hat. You never know when these kids are going to surprise you and just start doing something new! But, then I stubbed my toe on it as I was putting her into her baby crib in her baby pajamas and taking off her baby bib and I yelled out, “Get that piece of crap outta my way! I hate it!” Dave shouted, “What? Everything okay in there?” I walked out of the room and calmly asked, “Sweetie, could you pack up the walker for awhile? It is taunting me.” He acquiesced without asking any questions.
It was given to us by dear friends. An answer to prayer. With Adelaide not really having a diagnosis, insurance stuff is tricky. We pay for quite a bit of gear out-of-pocket. Our friends’ son was a rockstar and barely used it. Shannon offered it to me and it was like Christmas! Her husband dropped it off on our porch. I was in my pajamas and thanked him. And I resisted hugging him, because I make it a habit not to hug other people’s husbands when I am in my pajamas. But I was thrilled! A WALKER! FOR FREE!
But then winter ended, spring came and went, summer graced us with her presence and left, and autumn was in full swing. And as we quickly approached the magic ‘walking’ date and she still wasn’t able to even stand while holding onto anything, I started to see that walker as my enemy. And then I anthropomorphized it. And then, one day, it was in my way and I was about to throw it out the door and eat 500 Skittles. Into storage she went.
Before our physical therapist went on maternity leave in November, Adelaide actually stood between two chairs for 3 seconds and tried to hold onto them. It is a far cry from using a walker, but it was something! I cried happy tears. I cried sad tears. I cried tears that ended in a large French fry from McDonalds. Some days are just harder than others. And those days need fries. Don’t judge me. The next week, she tried to stand all by herself. It was her first time trying to go from a tall kneeling position to standing. At that point, I already knew we were not going to be walking with a walker before Christmas, but I birthed a new dream about Adelaide being able to stand independently before Christmas.
Now, we know she won’t be doing that either. She just isn’t strong enough. And she doesn’t understand that she needs to keep holding onto things for support. In Adelaide’s last two sessions with our new physical therapist, she has been making so many baby steps toward standing. And I am rejoicing in the baby steps. Literally. Last week, she initiated steps for the very first time. She just kept moving her feet and Nicole was over her, holding her hands, and keeping her from falling. Adelaide also stood up all by herself. She was holding onto her therapist’s hands and then stood up. She went from tall kneeling to standing. We were in shock. And one of the coolest new things in her repertoire: walking on her knees. While holding onto our hands, she is walking on her knees. Using reciprocal movement. Activating her glutes. Strengthening her pelvic girdle and core. Getting her body ready for standing and walking.
And I even got a short video of it.
When Adelaide is ready, the walker will be our friend. For now, it just needs to keep hiding from Adelaide’s scary mom who occasionally has an Edmund moment…
I think Edmund just needed some fries. Or some chips, for our friends across the pond.