Winter is here and it's been a brutal one. I know, I know, we live in Canada, the snow should not surprise me, but I kind of feel like we've had more than our fair share this year and now to add insult to injury, we are breaking records with the cold and wind. It's dreadful. It's only the start of January.
I think part of why this year seems worse than previous years is that it's the first time I've had to prepare all three kids for the horrid weather. Up until now, Kingsley has gone outside in the winter when I was interested in going outside... which is rare, hovering around 0C and has a nice, friendly snow. This year, he is in preschool and at preschool they go outside, no matter the weather. He plays outside at preschool, so now he thinks outside is all fun and snow is great. My glory days are over. This year, we play outside. Blech.
The weather shifted and snow hit the week Kingsley had his casts off, which was a godsend since you cannot fit snow pants or boots over casts and leg splints. I bought him Stonz boots again with a sherpa liner for warmth. They've been amazing. They fit amazingly over his AFO's and are very warm. I am going to cry when he outgrows these boots. There's nothing special about his snowsuit or any of his other gear, but putting it on is ridiculous. Dressing a typical child is not all that much fun. Dressing a child who needs endless layers to protect skin he cannot feel, who can barely sit up in that many layers, and who cannot push his foot into a boot is a downright gong show.
Remember the scene in A Christmas Story with Randy's snowsuit? This is my life right now. I work up a sweat, I'm exhausted. And many times Kingsley has laid on the floor when we're done, flailing around yelling about how he can't get up. Gong. Show.
Anyway, other thrilling escapades involve wheeling through snow, snow drifts, melting puddles of slush, puddles in general, salt and dirt. If you thought pushing a stroller through snowy sidewalks was bad, imagine not being able to tip that stroller back to get over the obstacles. Imagine lifting that dirty, snow covered stroller into your trunk over and over and over. Imagine pushing that dirt and snow covered stroller right on into your house.
I hate winter.
I'm trying very hard not to entertain the dismal thoughts running through my head about how Kingsley will cope with recess next year when he's in school full time. And when he's older and all the other kids are running through the snow. He'll be alright, right? He's not the first kid in a wheelchair in the winter.
If there's one good thing to come out of this, it's that Kingsley has started pushing his wheels with the hand rims instead of the actual wheel, to keep his hands clean.
Whine, whine, whiney, whine, whine.
Saturday, October 29, 2011
Footwear has been an ongoing challenge for Kinger. For starters, his ballerina foot makes it hard to get shoes on at all and then they just fall off if not incredibly tight. Second, he doesn't have control of his feet, so it's similar to getting shoes on a doll. Third, he has very small feet for his age. Really small. And lastly, for months he had just the one AFO and now he wears two. Those suckers are hard to get shoes over.
In warmer weather he just went barefoot a lot or just wore socks and AFO's. Last winter he had Robeez booties and a one piece, footed snowsuit so we never worried about anything more.
This fall, we have challenges. It is getting cold here and even though he won't be running around in the snow and rain, he does need something to keep his feet warm because I'm finding they're cold a lot. He has his cute Elmo Robeez, but they aren't warm or weather resistant.
I started asking around and today, I bought him the best. boots. ever. They are made by a company called Stonz Wear and although they are not marketed for kids with AFO's, they should be! They're a wide boot that you essentially just slide over the foot and then cinch at the ankle and/or the top to hold and form a 'boot' look. No wiggling or stretching over, they just pull straight up when his foot is flat. They're warm, water resistant, Canadian made, and cute!
I am in love.
Even better, because Kingsley's feet are so small he only needed a size Medium, which means he has two more sizes up before he outgrows the booties.
And even though I wasn't really looking for any, I also found a pair of super cute shoes that fit over his AFO's really well also made by WeeSqueak. The velcro straps open right up (why do most kids shoes not allow that to happen easily?) so the shoe is open to the toe.
I love happy endings. :)