I have been on vacation this week and just haven’t felt the need to sit down and plop down some words.
A few years ago, my son was diagnosed with pseudoachondroplasia.
That is a GIANT word. Essentially what it is, is a bone disease where the joints at the end of all of your bones that connect you from the hip bone to the leg bone to the anklebone and ALL of every other joint in your body… they don’t develop properly. Where a normal person has a ball and socket, in the case of some instances of Pseudoachondroplasia, the ball and sockets just don’t grow there. A lot of times it’s like a nub in a pocket kinda deal.
He has dealt with it for a few years now. Before his mother and I split up, we noticed it as a baby, but the doctors didn’t see any reason for alarm, until it came time to go to school and the physical didn’t go so well. Since then, it’s been tests and xrays and all sorts of bullshit just trying to figure out exactly what it is that he has.
Now that it has a name, it has it’s consequences. At the most recent checkup, where they have been tracking some slight scoliosis caused by this, I brought up the fact that he’s been struggling a lot the past few months. Stairs are almost impossible for him and his legs hurt a lot.
I give the kid credit, because I think he has developed a tolerance for pain that we will never know. One of the common side effects of pseudoacondroplasia is an early onset of arthritis, as early as age ten in some cases. My son hasn’t hit that yet, but I can sometimes see the early signs lingering there. He’s in pain. One trip to the mall and he is wiped before you can make a loop, let alone get him back to the parking lot.
Those consequences developed as a bowing of the legs. To picture it, when he walks he looks like the cowboys in the old cartoons. Just picture that on a real person and with a shitload of pain involved. Yeah. Not fun anymore, is it? So the little guy struggles and he has pain reliever just about every day half due to growing pains and the other half due to his situation.
At the most recent visit that I almost write about and keep avoiding subconsciously here… the doctor got a little spooked after he excused us to leave and I pointed his legs out. The doctor panicked when he quickly examined him and told us right then and there that we were looking at surgery options. Because the hips haven’t developed right, it has caused the bowing in his legs. The underdeveloped hips led to misshapen knee joints which caused the bowing to begin with.
My son immediately broke down and collapsed in horror and melted into tears. I don’t blame him. I was right there with him. I was pretty damn close myself.
The doctor immediately referred us to the best orthopedic surgeon in the area and we were on our way. The doctor must have been scared, because the appointment was mere days away and getting in that quickly with the surgeon can’t be easy.
My son is strong. He takes it better than any adult would. A few days have passed and he is nothing but an ox. He is ready to take on the world and understands that this could help him walk better.
…just don’t tell him what the procedure is going to be.
…we are most likely looking at the breaking of some bones in order to reconstruct them to where they need to be. There’s going to be casts and wheelchairs and physical therapy… it’s gonna make his summer really blow.
And for that, I can’t contain the pain I feel for him.