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It's gone!!

The cast is GONE!! Hooray! :) My computer is only semi-functioning at the moment so cell phone pictures are all I have but here's the events of the day:
In the parking lot of the doctor's office

If only the picture showed just how beat up and dirty it really was. :)

Dr. Raya reviewing her own chart while we waited for Dr. K. :)
And the inside of the cast was pretty disgusting, just as I had suspected. There was a lot of sand, dirt, and other unidentifiable nastiness in there.

Her poor little arm & hand had so much dead dry skin on them and it must have been really itchy because she had scratched all the way home from the doctor's office and it was all red & puffy when we got home.

More dry dead skin & you can also kind of see the little blistery spot on her thumb. She had those on 3 or 4 of her fingers so it was definitely time for the cast to come off.

The first thing I did when we got home was take off the shirt with the tight long sleeves that I put on her yesterday & then couldn't get off again because the sleeve was too tight to get over the cast. :) THEN she got to take a nice, warm bath and get BOTH arms wet. When she first got her right arm wet, she turned and looked at me like, "Oh, no! I did something naughty!" but then I asked her if it felt nice and she smiled and said, "Yeah!" She was in heaven!
After the bath, I ended up putting the dirty shirt back on her so she could have some of her precious "Tah-TEEM!" (sour cream, i.e. plain Greek yogurt) She may have been converted to left-handedness because she wouldn't use her right hand to hold the spoon. :) The first thing she did though was put the spoon down, pick up some yogurt, and smear it ALL over her right arm. She must have been making up for lost time. :) Then she ate 5 tablespoons of it!

All in all, it was a lovely day. I LOVE the clinic that we got the cast taken off at. It's the same place we see her GI and neuro doctors so we're very at home there. Everybody is nice, it's clean, and we just love it. We hadn't met this ortho doctor before but I liked him, and here's why. He was looking at the paperwork I had filled out and asked me to clarify why we had gotten it x-rayed and casted at 2 different places & then were having the cast removed at a 3rd. I told him that we'd had it x-rayed at the urgent care in that clinic, then we had an appointment with the ortho at the CP clinic so they just casted it there. As I was telling him that she has CP, she was more or less dancing on a chair, so that statement was followed up by me saying, "I know it's hard to believe, but she DOES have the diagnosis." She sat back down and he took her shoes off and tested some of her reflexes & tone in her legs, and as he was doing that, I again was feeling the need to explain & justify everything. I told him that she's had increased tone & reflexes in her legs & that she gets some tightness in her hip flexors, calves & feet. To my pleasant surprise, his reply was, "Yeah, I can tell that there's definitely some tightness and her reflexes are a little immature." THANK YOU, Dr. K, for validating my daughter's diagnosis and not making me feel like I have to try to convince you! To make me feel even better, after we had looked at the x-rays of her beautifully healed fractures and were walking out, he watched her walk and said, "You know, she does look really good." And when he said it, instead of making me feel like he was saying it out of doubt, he said it like it was a compliment. I told him that we've worked really hard in therapy and that she's had really good results. So once again, I left THAT clinic feeling good about everything. I am SO very grateful for doctors who make you feel good about what you have done and make you feel like you're doing something right with your complex child.
Back to her arm, she was so cute when we went to the x-ray room. When they had x-rayed it the first time after she broke it, they had me hold her on my lap & hold her arm still and that was what we were going to do this time, but before we could pull the chair over, she had walked right up to the x-ray table and laid her arm right across it. The x-ray tech said, "Well, I guess we can do it that way instead." so all I had to do was squat down next to her and make sure her arm didn't move. She held perfectly still and was such a big girl during her x-rays and I was proud of her. She is such a tough little girl and the older she gets, the more I can see how the experiences she's had in her first 2 years of life are going to make her so much stronger and help her to become a better person than she would have been otherwise. Sometimes I look at each of my kids in situations like that and I get so excited to see what great things they will do as they grow up.

This Thursday, Raya has an appointment with her GI doctor. Since we missed her weight check right after she broke her arm, this is the longest we've ever gone without seeing her or having a weight check. It's been 2 months since our last visit with her and I'm a little scared to see what the number on the scale will be. We shall see. :) I've been curious lately about Raya's gastric emptying & whether her stomach is emptying as quickly as it should so today I did a little experiment. I gave her the first feed of the day and then 3 1/2 hours later, I unclamped the tube & let her stomach drain into a bottle to see how much was there. I had fed her 225ml (about 7 1/2 oz) and drained out 110ml, so almost half. Granted there was some stomach fluid mixed in there, but it was definitely a lot of formula too. I don't know if it's necessarily bad that half of the volume of her feed was still there 3 1/2 hours later, but that seems like a lot to me, especially since it was a liquid formula feed with no solid food in it. It's been a year since she had a gastric emptying scan and that was normal, but both times she's had those done, they only used one and then 2 oz of formula for the scan and I felt like that wasn't enought to give an accurate representation of her typical gastric motility, but what do I know. :) Anyway, it's something I'm putting on my list of things to talk to the doctor about. On the bright side, she's not puking so at least if the formula's hanging out in her stomach too long, it's not making her puke. And on that note, it's time to go give her the night doses of her meds, including the appetite stimulant that we had started shortly before she broke her arm and then stopped until the cast came off. Now it's off & we can make her hungry again (hopefully! :).

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