Although she's made a lot of progress in the physical therapy department, Miss Josie still has a ways to go when it comes to mobility. Her wonderful physical therapist, Bea, attributes her hesitation to both her excessively content temperament (she's happy where she's at - no need to rock the boat) and her extreme cautiousness (the kid's not much of a risk taker).
That's why we were so excited when Bea arrived this week with an extra special gift for Josie: a snazzy red gait trainer! This little device is designed to promote proper positioning and encourage mobility for kiddos who can confidently stand but need a little extra encouragement taking steps.
Josie checking out her new wheels
Initially, Josie *ahem* wasn't crazy about this new idea. To say she resisted would be the understatement of the year. If she could talk, I'm pretty sure we would need lots of these types of symbols $*#!@* to explain what she was saying to Bea.
Our physical therapy session quickly morphed into cuddle therapy. I guess that Bea missed that day in PT school when they were taught how to resist the charming manipulations of cute children who prefer not to practice their skills and abilities. But you can't really blame Bea. In my lifetime of experience, I can confidently assert that kiddos with Down syndrome are born with a PhD in charming manipulation tactics!
Josie is a card carrying expert
But we finally succeeded in coaxing Josie into the gait trainer. Josie ensured we didn't get too cocky in our victory celebrations by sporting her most defiant you-may-have-won-this-battle-but-I-am-still-not-amused face, and clinging to the device for dear life.
But if I know anything about chromosomally enhanced folks, the key to conquering new skills and abilities is a willingness to out-stubborn them. Hence, Josie has been plopped in her new gait trainer every day and she's actually starting to dig it!
Look Ma - no hands!
While she hasn't figured out how to walk forward, she is getting quite good at pushing herself backward. Realizing that she's leaving the room, she enthusiastically waves "bye bye" and disappears down the hallway!