Friday, March 9, 2012

There's Good News and There's Bad News...

So, what do you want first?  The good news or the bad news?

Oh, you want the bad news first so that you can get it over with and then focus on the good news?

That's what I thought you would say.  See, this is why we are friends.  I like your optimism.  We'll start with the bad news...

BAD:  Rhett has to get a THIRD helmet.
GOOD:  His head shape has changed so much over the past several months.  Here are some comparison photos. (I couldn't get the PDF to upload, so I took a screen shot with my phone...not the best pics, but at least you can see the changes)

The percentage of kids with plagiocephaly and torticollis who have to get a second helmet is less than 20%.  The percentage of kids that get a third helmet is so low that they don't even have a count.  It is probably less than 1%.  I have to remind myself often that Rhett's head shape was in the "severe" category when we started this journey and it is now in the "moderate" category.  He will more than likely never get out of the moderate category, but the third helmet will continue (hopefully) to help shape that little noggin.

BAD:  I have to drive to Austin every other week for 3-4 more months.  Not just drive to Austin, but drive home too.  With twins.  In car seats.  All day.  Not fun at all!
GOOD:  I have a new, reliable, safe, nice vehicle to travel in.
BONUS GOOD:  I get to see my sweet sister and have lunch with her most trips....a breath of fresh air!

BAD:  Rhett's head stinks so bad at the end of the day.
GOOD:  I am mostly used to it since it smells just like Tim's dirty socks that I launder weekly.  Oh, and I discovered that setting it out in the sun for a few minutes each day really helps with the smell.

BAD:  We have to leave the helmet on 23 hours a day.
GOOD:  I don't worry so much about him bumping into things around the house.

BAD:  Rhett's head will never be perfectly round.
GOOD:  We don't care!  We love that boy and his crazy head!

BAD:  We get all kinds of looks when we are out in public.
GOOD:  We can decorate Rhett's helmet (and decorate it CUTE) and help educate the nosey public about plagiocephaly.  :)

Speaking of decorating....I never did post the pics from Rhett's 2nd band.  He got this band right before Thanksgiving, and we waited until after Christmas to decorate it.  Tim designed Rhett's new look, and our friend Coree at created the stickers for us.  We love how it turned out!

BAD:  I sometimes forget he is wearing his helmet and go to kiss his sweet little head....and get a mouth full of plastic instead.
GOOD:  I am thankful that I have that little head to kiss.  Plastic and all.

Yes, we are choosing to focus on the positive.  But I will admit that this journey has not been easy.  Honestly, I was really bummed out when we found out that we were going to have to continue with treatment.  I had been counting down the weeks and trips to Austin since I thought we were almost finished.  Since Rhett is older, his growth has slowed down, and there is no guarantee that we will see any more change in his head shape.  We struggled with the decision on whether or not to continue on.  Should we pay for another helmet, make the long trips to Austin, worry with the cleaning and care, etc. with the chance that it might not work?  Being a parent is hard sometimes, isn't it?  We did decide that we don't want to have any regrets, and of course want to do what is best for Rhett.  I know this is harder on us than it is on him.

Our visit with the neurologist this past month also confirmed that Rhett's torticollis, and consequently the plagiocephaly, was caused by his position in the womb.  The neurologist discussed with us that Rhett was basically stuck in one position and did not do a lot of moving around like Rhys was able to do.  Because of this, his neck muscles are still tight and will require therapy for many months to come.  A helmet protects the shape of his head while we continue to work on the torticollis.

So that is where we are right now.  Still in the helmet.  Still in therapy.  And still blessed.



  1. Misty, I think Rhett's head looks do much better- don't be discouraged!!! He's so handsome no one will notice the shape of his head when he flashes that smile with his pretty eyes!!!

  2. Julia is right! I can hardly tell that there's anything wrong! It looks great, much improved!!

  3. I can really see a difference in the shape of Rhett's head, and in the fact that he now has a neck! I don't know if that was part of the equation to begin with, but in the first set of pictures, first row (I think), in the first picture his neck doesn't show, in the second one it is showing a little, and in the third picture, you see a normal neck. It is just amazing to me that Rhett has endured all of this with such aplomb. He has such an angelic little face, and of course, so does his sister!

  4. I just wanted to tell you that you are a wonderful mom!!! I don't know what you are going through, because we didn't have that problem...but we all have our things we wish we didn't have to deal with. Mine is Sam's asthma. It is so bad and the sweet boy is miserable right now.
    Just wanted wanted to send you a note of encouragement and let you know that I am praying for you!! You are doing a wonderful job!! Your babies are so lucky to have you as their mom!
    Can't wait to see them one of these days!!!

    1. Thanks, Tricia. You are right that we all have things that we don't want to deal with....sometimes we feel like we are the only ones....thank you for the reminder! Love ya!

  5. BAD: Journeys we do not choose are never fun and often hurt our hearts.
    Good: Our faith grows and we are able to see the goodness of God even more.

    Here for the journey....