Thursday, June 30, 2011

Steadfast Progress

Caleb and I were eating lunch alone together today while Benjamin was napping, I can't remember exactly what we were talking about but Caleb made the comment: "I can't walk".
And he didn't say it with sadness, he just said it very matter of fact.  So, of course I jump in and say "Of course you can walk honey, you walk all the time."  Caleb clarified that he meant he couldn't walk without his walker.  And he's right.  He can't walk without his walker.  I've noticed a real longing in him to just walk, like everyone else.  He has said several times recently: "I just want to walk by myself" (again, not in sadness, just matter of fact).  But he can't.  He needs his walker.  I felt the need to immediately show him how far he has come.  I pulled up a video of him when he was barely 2 years old and had just gotten his first pair of HKAFO's and was taking steps for the very first time.

 I really wanted him to see how hard walking was for him and how much slower he used to be.

Two years ago Caleb "graduated" out of his HKAFO's and got AFO's.  I wanted him to see how unsteady he was when he first got those AFO's.

And I wanted him to see the progress he made in just a short time.  (This video was taking 3 months after Caleb first got his AFO's.)

And here is Caleb walking a year after getting AFO's.

And finally a more recent video of Caleb running to first base!


I don't know if Caleb truly realizes how far he has come.  I know that even I forget the long road he has traveled.  I needed to see these videos today.  I needed to see how much he has progressed.  I needed to see how strong he has gotten.  It's easy to focus on the things he still can't do but the truth is that there are so many things that he is doing now that he wasn't doing a year ago.  It is constant progress.  Steadfast.  Is it as fast as I would like, or even as fast as he would like?  No.  But it's progress.

Today was physical therapy at the playground and Caleb DID NOT want to go.  And I almost let him out of it.  I almost said: "Okay, we will skip the playground today."  But I didn't.  We went, even though he didn't want to.  And he did great.  He is faster and more confident every single time.  I doubted myself earlier in the day for making him go and tackle that playground but then I saw these videos and I'm reminded that this journey he is on isn't easy.  He has to work hard, even when he doesn't want to.

I've been trying to get him to use his forearm crutches too.
He is so not ready to walk with these crutches.  He wants to.  But there is no way, he just isn't ready...yet.  I've been trying to get him to just stand and balance with the crutches.  It is so hard for him, and it seems like there is now way he will ever be able to walk with these but there was a time when he struggled to walk with his HKAFO's but he got stronger and he did walk.  And he struggled to walk with his AFO's, but he got stronger and he does walk (and even runs sometimes).  So we will practice with the crutches.
He will get stronger.
Everyday is progress.


The Granthams said...

So awesome. Such a great reminder for those of us who are walking in the same footsteps.

Stefanie said...

so inspiring...keep up the great work Caleb, you have no idea how many cheerleaders you have!

New Beginnings said...

Keep up the great work Caleb. You will be walking on the crutches in no time. Just keep practicing and it will come. I am here like everyone else is to cheer you on. ( am also a walker with crutches just like yours and have been for close to 40 yrs) keep up the great work you can do it !!!

Jamie said...

He will absolutely do it one day, he is a strong and determined little guy :). You guys are doing great!

J said...


I just finished reading your blog from the very beginning, what a journey! Caleb has come a heck of a long way. As someone how is 17 and has CP, it is difficult sometimes; especially when I feel like I haven't mad progress, but it's the little things we forget. Caleb seems extremely determined and tenacious with a wonderful support system. That will carry him far and serve him well!


Dill Family said...

Caleb is my hero! I hope and pray my Jonathan will be able to do half as much as sweet Caleb does!

Colleen said...

Wow, loved watching those videos! His progress really is amazing! I bet he's going to make great progress with those crutches this year.

Meilani said...

I love this post! Thanks for sharing all of his amazing progress! Lily watched the videos with me and loved them all.

Jessica said...

I'm sitting here at my computer crying right now. I needed this reminder today.

Adrienne, Scott, Hanna & Hayden said...

Thank you for being an inspiration of slow and steady progress with walking. Sometimes I wonder if we will ever get there. You show me what a good mother can do for a child. Congratulations to you.

Chuck and Heather said...

Thanks for this post. I needed this reminder. Gwen's just now starting the walker process and isn't a big fan yet. It's hard to not get frustrated. Thanks for the inspiration!

Jill said...

WOW. Look at him. Look. At. Him!!!! I'm just in total awe of Caleb. Just in awe.

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