Sunday, August 29, 2010

{baby boot camp}

Since Avram had to spend time in the NICU when he was born, he automatically had a follow-up appointment with the NICU physical therapist. I didn't mind at all, because Dr.Overland is wonderful. She's got this whole new age-hippy thing going on, which I can be a total sucker for. She even took her shoes off and sat down on the floor indian-style when she came in our room for the check-up. So organic, man.

Anyways. Unnecessary details.

She felt that Ave had a strong left-side preference, due to his shunt being placed on the back lower right side of his head . I felt that she was putting it a little lightly, since he would SCREAM whenever his head was turned to the right.

She also felt that Avram would benefit from having a physical therapist come to the house. Being born 2 weeks early, hospitalized for nearly 3 weeks, and having surgery had all set him back a few steps. A physical therapist, she explained, would help him catch up, even get ahead.

I had mixed feelings. Having a long list of doctors and check-ups is one thing, but having them come to the house, too? That just sounded a little too much like running an assisted living home. But I told her, "If you think this is what he needs, then let's do it."

So, we're doing it.

We were referred to this awesome physical therapist named Debby, and she has started coming over once a week for what Jason & I have lovingly entitled "Baby Boot Camp." Debbie has given us an intense exercise regimen for the little man including strict instructions of ZERO back time, with the exception sleepy time. I have now been given the role of drill sergeant, leading the buddy man in long bouts of tummy time, standing exercises, rolling practices, "active" carrying positions, and sitting positions.

This past week has easily been one of the most ex-haust-ing weeks of taking care of Avram, even though he is sleeping 12-13 hours a night. Instead of popping him down in a bouncy seat or letting him stretch out on our bed when he gets all grouchy-pants, I am now spending every waking moment running him through Baby Boot Camp. He's not too happy about it, either, and he definitely lets me know. It has been the freaking Cry Baby Capitol of the World around here. Not that I blame him. If I had somebody making me run sprints & lift weights 24/7, I wouldn't be a happy camper either.

But on the other hand, in just one week he has morphed into a Special-Agent-Green-Beret-Marine-Rambo Baby. During tummy time today, he held his head all the way up for SEVEN MINUTES. This baby, just a week ago, would just sort of pop his head up for a second or two during tummy time. And he has these terrific little gluteus maximus muscles. And he is SO close to rolling over. And if I sit him up with his hands out in front of him, the baby SITS UP all wobbly for a couple seconds. This is huge, people. Huge. Monumental.

So in the midst of Avram's amazing physical transformation this week, we also are adding two more doctors to his ever-expanding list of health providers. I think we're up to seven now. I've lost track. Dr.Rob Bell wants us to go visit the pediatric optometrist, just for peace of mind, and Drill Sergeant Debby wants us to go see a craniofacial specialist to check Ave's head shape. My immediate response (which, of course, is always sunshine and rainbows) has been, "Ter-freaking-rific."

But then the Still Soft Voice gets a chance to speak, and reminds me that I specifically prayed for the right people to be placed along the banks of the river, for the right people to be there for our little miracle boy, and this is just another answer to that prayer.

More hands on the banks of the river.

1 comment:

Cherith said...

YAY AVE!!!! That is so so exciting!!! I have a friend who's little boy did (and still is doing) physical therapy and he is and HAS accomplished SO MUCH STUFF! Stuff that dr's where saying, when he was born, was never going to happen! I am so happy for you and these new people in your life. You'll become good friends. And they will be a witness to the continuous miracles of this little man :)