The truth is make the most of baby hood because when your little one hits toddler doom it really is madness! I and all my family wished and wished Christopher would get walking, my mum was over here trying to encourage him to get up right, even the dog demonstrated walking for the little mans benefit! Now he is walking I wonder why we were all so desperate for him to do it!?! I guess for my mum the urge for him to walk was because fundamentally we all want a great life for Christopher and the fact is having any disability as a child then later an adult can ,at times ,make life quite hard, not a bad life, but a tougher life. I am relieved Christopher is a healthy child and can do all the things I never could, even play in the garden, other hand wow it's a mega manic household!
First of all the equipment required for creakies to enable a child to practice standing and taking a step:
|My son just learning to stand unaided, he was around 20 months here.|
It depends on the wheelchair you use, I found an NHS one with arm rests and gaps under the rests was useful as you could stick a garden cane through the arm rests so the pole sits across the width of your chair. Enough pole needs to stick out either side of the arm rests or it will pop out and hurt baby or you or both! Most babies already coasting around sofas will happily want to hold onto a handy pole.
A motorised wheelchair often doesn't have arm rests with gaps so as long as your knees do not scream pain when someone touches them, your child will of their own back use your lap to pull themselves into a standing position to face you.
A baby walker- my health visitor who isn't supposed to recommend them said there are times and places where a walker is clearly a useful tool. The walker allows a child to get walking practice and build up muscles ready for walking. The best walker that holds child upright, we found, was a Babylo walker for Toys R Us and we tried at least three of the darn things before finding this one which was the only one that held him in standing position rather than in a superman position!
|From Toys R Us a Babylo Busy bee walker for £29.99|
A baby bouncer right from six months old will actually start to give your child an early idea of how it feels to be vertical and start using their quad muscles. We found baby walkers absolutely awful for our hands to try and do and undo but the best one we found that was just about manageable was a Tommy Tippitoes bouncer. Otherwise you may need to take a bouncer to REMAP (see early remap blog) who can adapt one for you.
Once the child is confidently toddling:
This is the difficult stage for those of us who really are very immobile but like every thing where there is a determination to succeed there is always a way!
Camping stores are great for a choice of baby items including reins, they offer half price fleece onesies, plastic feeding items, baby slings, baby back pack carriers and reins compared to baby high street stores. The other disabled parent bonus is a camping store is full of older people who enjoy a ramble on a Sunday rather than a horde of children zooming around on plastic cars and in walkers ready to knock into you and your toddle! We got a bumble bee rein from Atwools but they are also available at Go Outdoors. The bee goes on as a back pack and the mechanism buckle is relatively easy to do and undo even with hands that do not have strength or great dexterity. The bee has a strap attached to the back with a loop that goes around a forearm so as to not break my hand or fingers if he falls.
|Bumble bee reins from Go Outdoors uk £16.99, pls go and try reins out because you need ones suitable to your needs.|
I don't let him walk where I can not control the environment, he could walk in our lovely, quiet library safely but he would end up getting all the books out, reading them and throwing them on the floor, then my dog would have to spend a good twenty minuets clearing up after him by which time my son would be getting fed up and wanting to go home and making a fuss! No physically ill parent can easily pull a child or pick a child up screaming, kicking and having a tantrum so I don't invite him to get like that by restricting where he goes and when.
Above all the ridiculous pressure put on every one in society to full on entertain a child is a load of dog poo! Our son enjoys a toddle around our garden or his grandparents garden just as much as if we took him to a park. Until I am confident he will walk ok anywhere else he will strictly be garden exploring!
Christopher is at the stage where he loves nothing more than running around the house. Water play keeps him still for twenty minuets,filling a washing bowl tub up with some water and bathing his toys. He enjoys pretend cooking using a small cup of flour, a small cup of coco powder,dry pasta and a pan. Reading is still a big favourite and his speech is amazing, he counts to eleven, he knows his colours, he says words clearly and must say a good three hundred words now. He even enjoys puzzles, I have never known any child like puzzles, I hated them! He is a chatty, patient and bright boy, a little serious at times, I tell him to not fret about every thing, his favourite expressions seem to be "oh no" and "oh dear"!
The down side is he is nearly two, he whines when he wants something and then if he doesn't get it starts hitting us which actually leaves us breathless with pain, he may as well be stabbing us with a knife ,a small hit hurts so bad! We are having to get strict with him, stick him in his bedroom with the gate closed and leave him because we just can not have a child that is aggressive, it will hospitalise us! Mark and I are on very strong medications now to control our constant fatigue and pain, we are on chemo meds which leave us feeling sick and dizzy but we get through it together, we take shifts in caring during the day so the other can sit and rest limbs. It is difficult ,we are all having to muddle through especially as my ankle replacement has failed and likely needs re doing, the prospect of another three months in plaster is miserable but we do not dwell on it, we get on with each day, up before daylight and stopping at 8pm, we entertain one another, chat,laugh and we are all looking forward to Christmassy times with family and friends.
Finally the Department of Works and Pensions was sent a letter from us, declaring mark is going to start writing and illustrating children's books on Kindle which will go on sale on the first of December. The letter was basic so as to not be too difficult for the officials, simply declaring an intention and to ask to whom we should write to to send Marks accounts in etc. The letter went out first class two weeks ago,the first of December is on Saturday, it is now Thursday the 29th of November 2012 and we have heard nothing! Goverment agency at its worst!
Enjoy your weekend every one, Christmas is not far now, get your baby and toddlers Christmas book by Mark Jephcott, on Amazon, on the first of December, how exciting x :D