So last night was Mason’s second physical therapy appointment for his head/neck (he rarely ever looks to the left and always sits/lays with his head to the right so his head is getting very misshapen) and I was dreading the appointment all weekend.
We really have been struggling with his exercises. Some of the struggle is just struggling to remember to do them. His neck stretches shouldn’t be that big of deal since they only take a minute, but I always seem to think of them when he’s sleeping or right after he’s eaten, or some time other than when we’re changing him or when he’s awake and thrashing about. And since he HAS been doing a little bit better about looking to the left from time to time, they were getting further and further from my mind. So instead of getting 5 stretches a day, well, we were lucky if we were doing them once a day. And when I went to do them Sunday night, he screamed like he was being tortured and it seemed like all of our progress on his tight muscle had been lost. I was really hoping I was being dramatic.
Then there is the whole “propping him up so he’s off his right side” thing. Another fail. He either flails around angrily until he’s off the blanket or he screams like we’re killing him and will. not. stop. Which hasn’t been conductive to sanity or sleeping. Common sense tells us that the 10 hours a night he spends laying on the right side of his head is definitely NOT helping the situation, but if we don’t let him, he doesn’t sleep.
And THEN (I know, excuses excuses), I’ve really not had any luck with the daycare helping us out on this either. I’m not comfortable with them doing his stretches so I haven’t asked, but I’ve asked three people now about propping him up when he’s in the swing, the bouncy chair, or in bed. And as far as I know, it’s not happening. In fact, the first two people I asked, once I asked them, I didn’t see them again for days! And the message wasn’t getting passed around since everyone kept saying it was the first they’d heard of it. Aargh.
So, last night was the appointment. I wanted to crawl under my seat and really wanted to not be honest. “Oh yeah, sure, we’re doing his stretches ALL THE TIME! He NEVER is allowed to look to the right any more!” but it would have been so obviously a lie by the amount of screaming and crying he did from the moment the first stretch started. In fact, he was so bad that she had us both demonstrate how we were doing the stretches to make sure we weren’t doing them wrong. Ugh.
As for his head shape? It’s gotten worse. In three weeks, he went from a 12 to a 14 (the higher the number, the more mis-shapen the head) 8-12 is considered moderate mis-shapen-ness. So, with all the knowledge and “tricks” we learned at his last appointment, armed with everything we needed to start helping him have better range of motion and a more well rounded head. We failed 100%
At least the level of disappointment and horror over our totally dropping the ball has motivated me to be “Mrs. Mean Mommy Neck Stretching Left Side Looking Nazi” and his numbers and range of motion WILL BE better by his next doctor’s appointment. I had her give us official paperwork outlining the expectations for propping him up and gave it to the daycare this morning and stressed that I expected it to be done consistently.
But still, how can I expect them to do this stuff when his own parents dropped the ball just as badly?? Gonna go crawl under a rock now….