Monday, January 24, 2011

Finding Balance

Raising kids, in any capacity, can be tough...but throw some special needs into the mix, and you find yourself in a constant balancing act. That's where I am right now. I'm walking a very fine line between praising the accomplishments of one child, and feeling like I may be neglecting the other.
It's been a pretty exciting couple of weeks. Madison has made unbelievable progress with her walker. I am seriously so proud of this little girl! In just a few short weeks, she has gone from a few wobbly steps in the living room, to trips to the mall, Target, and the grocery. It's difficult to contain my excitement, but I'm trying to. I'm constantly wanting to burst into tears and laughter all at the same time...but I know every reaction I have is being watched, so I'm trying to keep it in check. Mason, while super excited in the first few days, is now over it. I can see the look on his face when strangers in stores start to make over Maddie. I hear it in his voice when he asks me repeatedly to take pictures of him, or make a movie of him for the computer. (He picked this clip out of several to be posted)
My lil' man with his Big Wheel :)

He wants to know that I'm watching him too, and it hurts me to see him trying so hard to get attention...even negative. He's been acting out a bit lately, and I'm wondering if it's because of all the attention his little sis has been getting. It's nearly impossible for people to see this pig-tailed pixie with her tiny walker, and not make over her. Who could blame them?

I took the two of them to the grocery last week. After we'd gotten all our items in the cart, I took Maddie and her walker out, and let Mason push the cart while she walked up and down the aisles. Mason was happy with his job when we first started, but after about 30 minutes of walking, he wasn't into it. Every time someone stopped to talk to Maddie or wave at her, his role felt less important to him. It bummed me out. I let him pick a special snack for his hard work, and made a big deal over how much he had helped me...and he really had! There's no way I could have done groceries, and walk with her, without his help.

So it's become my balancing act...Praise Maddie and encourage her to keep walking, but not too much, so that Mason feels he has to put on a show as well. It's tough. I know he adores her.

This is the two of them in his tent...Check out that hair!

I see the way he is with her when he thinks no one is watching...that's "his Maddie".

They love each other so much.

I only hope and pray that I can do everything to make sure their bond stays strong, and that they always know how much I love them both.


This week is another busy one...ending with Maddie's ortho appointment. He wanted to see her again when she started to take steps, so we could re-evaluate, and discuss twister cables for her inward rotation. I have heard lots of mixed things about the twisters, and I have been hoping to avoid them. I have a new clip of Maddie walking while wearing a derotation strap, and I'm hoping it changes his mind about the twisters.

If you compare this clip to the previously posted video, the difference in her left leg is amazing. It is almost perfectly straight with the straps on it. I don't have anything yet for her right leg, so my hope is that instead of the twister cables, he will order us a set of these straps instead. They fit under her clothes, and so far she has tolerated them well...So we will see what happens. It should be an interesting appointment...and as an added bonus Mason's school will be closed that day, so he will go to Children's with us for this appointment. Hoping it all goes well. As the balancing act continues....


  1. Oh, that is so tough! It sounds like you are doing all the right things. Those pictures are adorable, and they obviously love each other to pieces! (BTW, I can't see the videos--it says they're private?)

  2. Thanks Colleen! I think I fixed the videos, so try it again...Sorry!

  3. Selina,
    What a beautiful post. I remember when I first got Grayden's diagnosis being the most worried about how it was going to affect Zander. Your description is beautiful and has me in tears as I picture my kids the same way in the future. I know you are doing all the right things. It is obvious that you are an incredible mommy and your kids are amazing. Mason is going to be a better man because of Maddie and vice versa. Thank you for being such an amazing role model for me as I enter this journey.

  4. She's doing so well -- she looks great and so STRONG! I think I can understand a bit, and I can tell you are on thr right track in the balancing act, mama -- because you are so alert to both kids and their needs!

  5. Oh Momma I can't imagine - I know it has to be so tough! But the fact that you are aware of it is the BEST thing right now. You're in tune to your children and doing different things to try to keep them both confident and encouraged - and that's no small task. You're doing a good job. :) Okay - now for the big stuff - I LOVE THE VIDEOS!!!! Her legs look SO much better! It's amazing the progress between videos - HOW EXCITING! She is doing so well! I wish I could walk around Target with you!!! :) Keep us posted with the ortho appt - I'm very interested in what he says. But stick to your gut - our ortho wanted to put Jet in AFO's the last time we were there (back on October) and now look at what Jet is doing?! Just with some hightop shoes and shoe inserts for support - I know the AFO's would have got him going sooner - but then he would have been dependent on them - so I'm glad I asked to wait. You know what is working and how she is progressing better than anyone -so trust that. Can't wait for the update! Much love!

  6. Like Joanna, I can't even imagine. Grey being my only one I just sing his praises all day long...I can't imagine another in the mix and how they may feel. But you? You are an amazing mother who is doing ALL of the right things for BOTH of your kiddos. You are all so lucky to have each other...and those straps? A-MAZING!! In my professional opinion...bye bye twisters! :)

  7. I can so relate to this, thank you for this post. Our boys are younger and am not sure how much they understand yet but they definitely look to us for "approval". With Nicholas just beginning to walk, we clap and praise him and its just such an exciting time. Alex watches all of this, he claps too because we are, he's so sweet and innocent and he doesn't know any different, that maybe he 'should' be walking too. I find myself constantly trying not to pay "too" much attention to these things for Alex's sake, or too much during all of alex's therapies because Nicholas is craving the extra one on one attention too. It can be tough finding the right balance exactly how you say. I think you are doing AMAZING and keep such a great way on including Mason. they are sooo sweet in those pics!!!

  8. You wrote the words I am too tired and stressed to write. It is such a hard balancing act. I feel guilty all the time that the boys don't get enough of me or the best of me because I am so busy with therapy, etc. I know, like your little ones that they love each deeply but I still worry. Hang in there.

    I can't get over how awesome Maddie is doing - so great! I'd love to hear more about those straps and how they work. I am going to ask our PT about them since she mentioned twister cables as well for Belle.

    Keep up the awesome job!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...