Strong Kids, Strong Mom by Liimu

A couple weeks ago, I took my daughter to the neurologist for an evaluation at the suggestion of her orthopedic surgeon, who performed heel-cord lengthening surgery on her a year ago. He was concerned about the hyperarching of her spine and a deterioration in her gait from the last time he had seen her. When she saw the neurologist, he recommended she get MRI scans of her entire scan as he thought she might have Tethered Cord Syndrome, a rare but serious condition that would require spinal cord surgery in order to correct it.
We got to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHoP) at 7:30 am and despite a couple rumblings about being hungry, Amelia was really in quite good spirits. She freaked out at the idea of getting a needle and wasn’t particularly excited at the idea of having to be sedated and spend the day with me instead of going to summer camp to be with her friends. They put numbing crème on her hands and the sedation doctor came to check her out. Imagine my chagrin when she told us that Amelia’s adenoids were enlarged and wouldn’t be able to be sedated. Apparently, because she was having an MRI of her entire spine, she would need to be rendered entirely immobile, which one of the medications was designed to do. Unfortunately, because the enlarged adenoids pose a risk of sleep apnea, this meant that if they put her out, she might stop breathing and not start again. They told us we should leave, go see ENT and come back later. Unless….like a big kid…Amelia could get the MRI without being sedated. That would mean being slid into that nasty tunnel thing and staying completely still on her own for an HOUR. I asked her if she thought she could do it and she said yes. They said we could come back at 11:30 and have it done.

Off we went to Wal-mart to get a movie for her to watch while in the MRI tunnel (Princess and the Frog) and a prize for her and her sisters if it went off without a hitch. WHICH IT DID! I was writhing like a maniac on my little bench but every time I looked at her little feet sticking out of the tunnel, they were completely still. I could not get comfortable, sitting up, legs crossed, laying down, I don’t know what was wrong with me. But Amelia? Not a single twitch. Needless to say, she got her Princess and the Frog movie, her Toy Story 3 Water Blaster and an ice cream cone, to boot. She is an amazing little kid, I tell you that.

When we were walking back from getting ice cream, we had the following discussion:

Amelia: “So mama, can you guess what my favorite part was?”

Me: “Watching the movie?”

Amelia: “Yes, and…?”

Me: “Going out for breakfast with mama?”

Amelia: “Yes, and…?”

Me: “Getting your ice cream cone?”

Amelia: “Yes, and…? I’ll give you a hint. It starts with a T.”

Me: “Taking the braces off? I don’t know!!!”

Amelia: “THE TUNNEL!!! It was so fun!”

She’s an amazing kid, that one. Finds a way to have fun during an MRI. Go figure. Oh, and the happy ending to the story? The results were completely normal. So, let’s hope she brings that happy-go-lucky attitude to the physical therapist’s when we go. And let’s hope that I do, too.