Just a quick update, for those who want to know. We saw Patrick’s physical therapist this morning. I was hoping she’d be pleased by what she saw, and she was. This is good news. It means he doesn’t need a brace quite yet.
After a week of twice daily stretches, Patrick is beginning to put his right heel down when he walks. When he’s going slowly and deliberately, he can do it almost every time. When he tries to go fast, it’s back up onto his toe and he starts to trip and veer to the left.
The therapist says this means that it’s almost certainly a matter of tone. For whatever reason, the muscles in that foot are pulled tight. When he thinks and controls it, he’s able to get them to stretch into ways that allow him to walk. When he goes fast, he can’t control it and the foot is pulled up and in.
So for the forseeable future, we’ll keep doing exercises to stretch out the muscles so that he doesn’t have to fight as hard to control them. Kinda like how you stretch out a balloon before you blow into it. The more we stretch, the more flexible the muscles will be.
He still loves walking, though! All day long I wander around putting walking toys in positions so that he can find them and push them across the room. Last night, we went out for a walk around the sidewalks in front of our house. For the first time, I didn’t take a harness to hold on to and he tripped and fell a few times, but most of the time got up and kept walking. Now we’ll just hope he’ll keep trusting me.
And when he does start walking, I’ll probably be sorry that I pushed so hard for this. After all, right now I spend all my time following him around and putting things back that he pulled down or out. Walking just means he’ll be quicker in his path of destruction.