Keep Your Head Up

While reading “Bumpy the Car” to my two and half-year-old daughter, Evelyn, I noticed the difference in her legs’ length. I’m used to seeing it by now in the skip-like nature of her run and the way her pant legs bunch.

“This is not clubfoot.” The misdiagnosis by the midwife is a common one, and it took an orthopedic specialist at Seattle Children’s Hospital to diagnose the rare, posteromedial bowing of the tibia (PMBT) by x-ray.

I’d prepared myself for clubfoot – the several years of stretching, exercises, and braces – however, that PMTB came with intensive surgery and painful, long-term recoveries I didn’t know what to think.

The helplessness and sadness I felt as a first-time mother were beyond anything I’d ever experienced in my 38 years of life.

Then, midway through covid, I signed up to see a presentation by a woman with the same diagnosis. I felt relief in hearing her perspective on it and also hearing how fantastic her orthopedic team had been. It was them that’d created a desire for her to pursue a career in the medical field.

I’m not going to lie. I’m scared. I don’t know the future or the setbacks and trials Evelyn will endure.

But I also have hope because I know that life’s challenges give us strength and grit. I know the same will be true for my little girl. She’s a strong one, and I’m confident in her.

Thanks for being here. Love, Jaclynn

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