Caleb can do it...but he hates it. He doesn't like walking with his KAFO's. He doesn't like walking. It's hard, awkward, and cumbersome. Honestly, it's not functional...it's simply walking for the sake of walking. He hates it.
As we are getting ready for a therapy re-evaluation next week and knowing that we will have to set goals, I asked Caleb if walking is important to him.
His answer without hesitation: No.
Walking is not important to him. He's 9 years old and I think he is old enough to be a part of his goal planning. He should get a say. And he says "no" to walking. I get it. I really do. Walking is really hard work for him. And he needs a lot of support to do it. Even when he was walking really well (before the tethered cord surgery 3 years ago....wow, has it been 3 years?!) he would choose his wheels over his walker when given the choice. After that surgery he lost everything. He had to start all over. He's had to work so hard to gain back even some of what he lost. I was hopeful that he would gain back the ability to walk but then weeks turned to months...and now years. I'm not so hopeful now. And honestly, I'm okay with that. I've never had a problem with his need for a wheelchair. I love his wheelchair. It is independence, speed, confidence and mobility. It is a blessing.
I'm okay if he never walks again. But I want him to be okay with that. I think he is. Walking isn't important to him. I respect that. I'm actually relieved to hear him say it. I feel like a weight has been lifted.
I think he felt the same way.
I'm glad I asked.