Eva and I met with the surgeon a couple of weeks ago and nothing will be done to her feet until at least next summer.  They are much worse than anticipated and the soft tissue surgery (Ponseti method) will not work on them; it was tried in China already. 

So her options are pins that are turned four time a day with a "rack" around her legs, high chance of infection, no guarantee that it would work, and she would be unable to walk for a year.  I think the doctor said that the feet could be done separately, so six months for each if I heard him correctly.  Pretty Baby had surgery like this done to one leg when she was 13, but she managed the care herself-keeping the pins turned and cleaned is crucial.

She could have a bone removed from each ankle and then her heel bone could be stood up to act as two bones.  Her feet would look normal but of course they would not be able to move the way that other people can move their feet.

She could have a partial or full amputation.  The partial amputation would cut into the current ankle from the top; the full would cut off the foot.

The doctor said that she is essentially a "peg leg" right now and that is why she has trouble standing in a tub or on wide stairs-she has no feet or toes to grip with.  I think that's why she loves her winter boots so much more than her shoes, although she loved her shoes.  Boots are flat on the bottom and conform on the side while shoes have ridges for the natural placement of feet-hers aren't natural.  Thank you to Pretty Baby for suggesting that this was the case; I'm sure you're right and I will start looking for those long slipper socks for Eva to wear indoors.

So we will meet with the surgeon again at the end of April, after Eva has become comfortable and verbal, etc., and talk again.

We got the foot of snow that was expected but it's all gone now, much to Eva's disappointment.  Aidan was thrilled to have someone to go sledding with.  Here she is in her long johns just before he crashed his sled into the rocks and took a chunk out of the front of it.  They had a great time, though.

I had to run right out and get new winter wear for them.  She needed snow pants and he needed new everything.  This picture is not very flattering of him because it's close up and the coat is large enough for him to grow into plus it's one of those double coats, but they both were happy with them.
On the day that I returned from China I got an email from a publisher accepting a manuscript I sent to them in September.  I can't say more right now, this work will be published under a pseudonym, but I have been very busy writing revisions to make my December 1 deadline and get the work done before I return to school next Monday.  I have been writing since I was a child, but this is the first big piece of work that I've sold, so I'm beyond excited!  There is never a dull moment in our house.

11/07/2011 1:56pm

Congratulations on your work be sold! That is fantastic.

Wow, so many decisions on how to correct Eva's feet! I pray that God leads you to the best option for you and her!

I thought about you when I heard the northeast was getting an extra early snow fall! Fun to play in!

Have a good week!

11/08/2011 3:29am

Morning Ruby - wow - a ton of things to figure out concerning her long term care - but God will provide the insight - and maybe even with her own voice! Glad that the doctor wants to 'go slow' and just defer until she 'gets verbal' - so important IMHO!

And congrats on getting published!! Please let us know your 'nome de plume' as the publication date nears!! Enjoy the satisfaction - you've earned it!

hugs - aus and co.

11/08/2011 7:51pm

I can't imagine how overwhelming the surgery decision will be. I'm sorry to hear about the severity of some of those options as well. It puts our situation into an entirely different perspective. Wu Yi continues to ask me daily to check your blog. She loves the photos. She went sledding for the first time as well this weekend. She is happy to just roll around in the snow too!

11/09/2011 2:23pm

Ruby, I'm sure these medical choices are not easy ones to make. Tough stuff! I'm glad to know she is enjoying her time in the snow! I don't think they got a lot of that in Guizhou:)

April Z.
11/11/2011 5:54am

I'm sorry to hear that Eva's situation is so complex :( It sounds like you will have some very difficult choices to make, but it seems wise to give it time and wait until she is able to communicate better. I love seeing the pictures of Eva - she always looks so happy!

Congratulations on your work being published! That's a wonderful accomplishment.

Eve Boger
11/18/2011 4:22pm

Congrats on your writing Ruby! What wonderful news!

Praying for you and decisions for Eva....so glad she is here to be able to have choices, however hard they are.

Love all of your snow pictures....


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