Academics, Ankles and Abnormalities

Good morning Mamazina readers.  My girls have started their second week of school.  Their first day was Monday August 6th, and we are all learning a new academic routine.  Rachael is now a freshman in high school – new school and new schedule.  Gretchen started middle school.  It appears my oldest is having a harder time with the transition.  This morning she was stressed out due to a math assignment.  They had to go online to get the work and the website posted a different assignment than the teacher gave them.  My daughter was whining and sobbing about doing the wrong work and receiving a failing grade.  Meanwhile Gretchen seems to be quite relaxed in her new school.  Of course life can’t be that easy…

During the girls’ well checks this summer, we once more mentioned the abnormality of Gretchen’s ankle.  The doctor looked at it and watched her walk, and we finally got new X-rays taken.  Almost two weeks passed before the doctor called about the results.  She said there was abnormal growth in the ankle and referred Gretchen to a podiatrist.  This was a couple days before we left for New York.  I didn’t call the podiatrist until we returned home.  The earliest they could get Gretchen in was August 7th.  The second day of school, and she would already be missing academic time.

The podiatrist looks at the X-rays and sees Gretchen is missing a joint in her ankle!  She broke her foot back in January 2009; why weren’t we told about the missing joint then?  The podiatrist didn’t know, but he looked up the orthopedic’s notes.  They stated, missing joint may be genetic.  Great Mom and Dad didn’t need to be aware of this?  Even before Gretchen broke her foot,  her ankle turned in a little funny.  We have always asked the doctors at well checks to watch her walk.  They never seemed overly concerned about it, and even after the ankle was broken, it took us over three years before new X-rays were ordered!

On Friday August 10, Gretchen had a 3D recon CT of her right ankle and weight bearing X-rays of both her ankles and feet.  The left ankle also looks abnormal.  It isn’t as pronounced as the right one though.  On the 22nd we head back to the podiatrist to learn about treatment options.  Gretchen is not excited about surgery.  She keeps telling us; If the doctor says surgery, I’m going to stay in a wheelchair the rest of my life.  You know Mom had surgery on her right ankle when she was 13.  We can start the “I had surgery on my right ankle” club.  Nope doesn’t want to hear about it.  When this posts we will have heard if surgery is the best course of action.  Until then… I’m trying not to focus too much on the s word.

I wrote this poem about Gretchen’s ankle.  It is also an apt description for how Rachael feels about her new academic life.  Hoping things will settle into a comfortable routine here soon.


Sad little girl
Mom gives her a loving embrace
Sad little girl
Dreaming of when she loved to whirl
Her life now an obstacle race
She struggles trying to keep pace
Sad little girl
Veronica Hosking

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