Feel free to giggle. As if our five days earn me the right to pose as an expert on the subject. But, I am one who would check into hotels on tour, and even for a short stay, would survey the room, say with shake of my head,
“Oh, dear…this just won’t do.”
Rushing out before sound-check, I would scurry about to stock the room with candles, table cloths, pictures and other objects that would create a homey ambiance. I like routine and familiarity. Where there is lack of these, I zoom like Road Runner to every store within a 15 mile radius to rectify the situation as quickly as possible.
About an hour after my post about Zachary’s incident was written, we were brought back to his room on the pediatric floor. It was at that point that the effects of a sleepless night, and stress of the whole ordeal caused an automatic shutdown in my brain. I could not have fully been prepared for the full aspects of this type of cast and all of the adjustments in basic care it would require.
It also must be noted that I
have a temper wear my heart on my sleeve. As a child, I would stub my toe and have an immediate response of anger toward the inanimate object that dared to step into my path. My best pal from birth is LHTA (laughing her tail off) right now at memories of her spunky, awkward and brace-faced sidekick turning around and yelling at door jams.
Ok, so as an adult I have matured (for the most part) and have learned to temper this reaction a tad. Although the feelings are still there, most often I don’t go around hitting solid objects, thankfully. I have not however outgrown my trait of nakedly and unabashedly offerining the world every nuance of my thought process and emotional state. I don’t believe people often ask,
“Gee. I wonder what Emily feels about this?”
So, when the sweet doctor joined us in the room to offer blog links and tips on how to manage daily routines with a toddler in a spica cast, my thoughts on the contraption were quite clear. As I tried to change our first diaper, my son screamed in pain at the slightest touch. How on earth am I supposed to clean him if I can’t even take the diaper off? I can’t reach the tabs? I can’t turn him over. What. The. Hell?!
“There has to be a better way! Is this cumbersome tank of a contraption really necessary?”
I spouted, displacing my anger over the whole situation onto the cast and the orthopedic surgeons who came up with such an inconvenient and obnoxious solution. As if she was going to say,
“Ha! Of course there is! We were just messin’ with ya! Let me get the saw!”
This dear physician sympathetically held my hand and said,
“I know its overwhelming. Do you want me to go get a laptop and we can watch some tips on YouTube together?”
Feeling exhausted and ashamed of showing this lovely person the ugliest side of myself, I bit back tears and quietly said,
“No. I think we just need a minute alone. Can we just have a minute?”
“Of course. I promise you guys will adjust. I know it’s a lot to take in. I’ll be back in a few.”
After I had my over-dramatic, bratty little snit, I got on the phone with a dear friend whose two-year old had the same cast last year. With a few of her tips and a lot of her encouragement, I got off the phone, called “last call” for my pity party and took my first stab at changing Zachary’s diaper. And in case you were concerned, in true Emily Rozek fashion, I made sure to apologize to the doctor when she returned ten minutes later. We were discharged and managed to load him into his car seat. The first miracle of miracles.
While the remnants of anesthesia lulled him back to sleep on the way home across the George Washington Bridge, we brainstormed seats, snack trays, possible sleeping positions, and diaper changing techniques.
Its been five days and we feel like pros! The biggest pro of all, of course is little, trooper Zach. Here are some of the things we have found to bring ease into a not-so-easy situation.
This post would be more aptly called “Our Spica Cast Must-Haves” being that we have learned that each spica cast is a bit different and what works for one may not work for another, but that’s what we have so far!
Any caregiver who stumbles upon my blog in search of spica cast tips, click on the pictures for links to the actual products. And remember, it’s only been five days! What do we know?
The Motherfog Family