Friday, 8 April 2016

Toilet Training! Yay!

Yay! Oh my goodness, I was beginning to think we'd never get to this day! But we have. Little Miss Penelope is finally starting toilet training! 
Thank freaking goodness. We are so ridiculously over changing dirty butts. Fingers crossed the process is quick and relatively easy now that she is ready. 


While I am infinitely excited about her getting out of nappies, I am really enjoying having her still be small. That probably makes no sense, but having an 'adult' child in all her temperamental teenage glory, who is driving us a bit cuckoo at the moment, makes me realise how insanely precious and fleeting this time is. Which I did already know, but it's definitely being well and truly reiterated a lot lately. 
So I am enjoying the cuddles and kisses, and the unconditional love that goes hand in hand with toddlers. She is just happy to be with me. She is happy to be with us. We have a pretty good routine going on these days; she lets me brush her hair every day (and I know that's a weird thing to say as I'm the parent and she's the child... but her hair is so crazy that it's a relief to have her not fighting me when I try to brush the Einstein look away!), she plays so happily and we are getting to the point where a little reasoning is starting to work for tantrums. 



(Yes. That is Vegemite on her face. She loves it, just like her Mummy.)

She is eating far more food; she still has bottles of milk but we've decided to let that battle slide for now. She only naps occasionally, but always has a small bottle of milk on the couch with her pillow and blanket. This calms and recharges her and it works for us. She is growing and she is happy and healthy. She is also the funniest child and a constant source of both frustration and amusement to us all. 

So what else has been happening here? Well, while I was heading off to the hospital a couple of weeks ago with my bizarre leg issue, the Social One, and The Boyfriend went and gave blood. A big deal for them and an awesome thing for anyone, let alone a couple of 16 year olds to do. I stole these pics from her Facebook page because I had to post them. While giving blood is an admiral thing to do, I was pretty amused at the drama of the two of them......




They both ended up apparently quite light headed and feeling sick. Of course being teenagers, they had to share their dramas on Facebook hehe. Good job guys. 

We also had the Little Dude's 11th birthday. We gave him a bunch of science stuff, including a cool little student microscope. He is definitely our little scientist/engineer in the making. He still loves his Lego, and so he also got some Lego experiment making kits. (That's probably not what they are actually called, but you get the gist.)



As I am fairly technologically incompetent and The Awesome One isn't home to help me, I can't figure out how to get this little 10 second video to show up here. So click on the above video link (right where it says VIDEO above), and you'll get to see the Little Dude and one of his Lego engineering creations in action. It's a Facebook video but it's set to public so you shouldn't need an account to watch it. 

So now on to the progress of my weird non-working leg. I have had a brain scan. While not actually confirming that there is for certain a brain in there, the doc did say that all was normal. So one can assume there is one inside my skull. 
I know, I know... I wasn't really too amused when The Awesome One made that joke at the hospital, but now that the stress has eased I can see the funny side of it. 

There is still no apparent reason for my leg not working, although it could have something to do with arthritis. The jury is still out on that though. In the meantime, I have a follow up appointment with the Neurologist in 4 weeks and there is very slow progress, but progress nonetheless being made. 
I can do a straight leg raise (you know where you are sitting or lying with your legs straight out in front of you), to only about 20 - 30cms (8 - 12inches) depending on the day. When I've been up and about my leg gets pretty tired so it doesn't lift as far, but on the rest days I can get it up a little higher. It literally just stops. The other leg goes up perfectly normally. The right leg however gets slightly raised and stops. Then it starts to shake and wobble like crazy. Which is totally weird and disconcerting. But kind of funny to watch. Especially when I start grunting and yelling at my leg to "move!!!!! Dammit, go up higher you stupid leg!!" 
By the way, yelling at your own leg does not make it go up higher or stop shaking or move any better. You know, just an FYI in case you ever need to know that. 

I can wiggle my toes now though!! It's very exciting, which is so sad and pathetic. I can almost wiggle them as far as the left toes, but not as quickly. They move slower and it takes concentration, rather than being something automatic. 
I can almost flex my ankle as far forward and backwards as the left ankle, but just not quite. And my toes do something weird and flex backwards when I do move my ankle, but small victories, you know? 
I still can't quite bend my leg towards myself properly. You know like when you're sitting and you want to pull your knees up to your chest (or not even that far, just bend them up towards you?). Well I can do it, but not very well. So what I mean by I can, but I can't, is that sometimes it's relatively smooth, but most of the time my leg shakes like a rattlesnake in full aggression mode while I'm trying to pull my knees up, and once they are up and bent, I can't actually keep my leg in place. It just slides straight back down again. I have no strength in my leg or foot to hold it in place when it's bent. 
Like I've said. Weird as bleep. 

I started trying to do some very basic exercises, like ankle and toe flexes, and I thought it would be a great idea to use one of those elastic thingies. You know the ones you use in the gym and stuff. I have used them in Pilates; you stick it over your foot and use it for resistance. Well.... it didn't quite work as planned. Because I have no resistance in my leg, foot or toes. So it flicked right off and into my head. Being me, I thought it was a one time deal, and tried it again later. This time it flicked straight into my eyeball. 
It hurt. A lot. We were concerned another trip to the emergency room was on the cards, but there was no blood. Phew! 
The Awesome One took my elastic training thingy away from me. 

I still can't walk on my heels - my foot simply doesn't lift up from the toes. It just doesn't move. But I can kind of walk on tip toes. I mean, I can get both feet to flex up, but my right ankle just gives way when I'm up. I can kind of take a step though as it gives way, so that means I can kind of walk on tip toes, right?

I can now walk one foot in front of the other though! It's very exciting! If I walk really slowly, and concentrate really hard, I can do it without falling over. But I still can't stand straight up with my eyes closed. It's like, ohhhh, over she goes! Fall straight over. 
Weird.

And when testing my muscle strength last night, The Awesome One said my toes definitely had a little resistance strength in them!! I was so excited! Not a lot, and I still absolutely can't drive, but progress is progress, right!? I do still get a lot of pain in my leg, but on the upside, my back feels great most of the time! Turns out my back was over compensating for the posture issues caused by not walking properly to begin with because my hip was so sore. So that was aggravating my existing back problems. Once I started walking with a crutch, my back was able to not work as hard and the muscles eased right up. So very little back pain now, which is a major plus!!! And another plus is that the high strength pain meds don't work very well on my leg pain and were really more for the back pain, which as I said is mostly gone, so I've been able to go right down to the lowest dose! Yay!  

And lower pain meds means less doped up time like in this photo!




So that's where we're at right now. 

So here are a couple of photos for you. The girls were all home together not long ago. They had a pupil free day, but the primary school didn't. So I figured it was a good time for some sisterly bonding. They started off painting, yay! Then they moved onto more girly stuff like face masks and nail polish, *sigh. But at least they were all doing it together. 




There's probably a bunch of other stuff that I've missed, but I'll remember it at some point and put it in the next post. 



So that's it for now, more updates to come. :)