I almost forgot to post....we had an appointment with Kirch Developmental last week. It was our first visit with a developmental pediatrician since Ashlyn was discharged from the NICU.
The appointment seemed to come out of nowhere. As odd as it sounds, I was beginning to stop thinking about Ashlyn having hydrocephalus and the shunt. She is just such a happy and easy baby that you would never know anything is wrong with her. Days go by where I don't even give much thought to it anymore. I never imagined I would be able to relax and enjoy my little girl without stress and worry 24/7. I am at peace with her diagnosis and am confident that her quality of life is and will continue to be wonderful despite her rocky start.
It is great being able to just treat her like a normal baby now. I have stopped measuring her head circumference on a daily basis. I do still feel her fontanel to make sure that it is soft, but I'm not obsessive about it. While I am always on the look-out for symptoms of shunt infection or malfunction, it is no different than how a parent keeps an eye on their child for symptoms of an ear infection or cold.
Because of this new and more carefree approach to my parenting, I was thrown for a loop when I got the call reminding me of our appointment at Kirch. All of a sudden, I was overanalyzing my baby girl. She is 3 months old, and her head is still wobbly.....she can't roll over.....and does not lift her head up very much when on her tummy. Will she need physical therapy? Will they say she is delayed? The night before, I got myself all stressed out worrying about the appointment.
However, the developmental pediatricians we saw said that Ashlyn seems to be right on track. Yay!! They didn't seem to think her head control issues and lack of rolling is anything to be concerned with this early. Besides, it seems like Ashlyn is just a more socially motivated baby than a motor motivated baby. Braeden is the opposite....so advanced with his motor skills but slower when it comes to social and verbal milestones.
It was a full house in the patient room....resident, attending, med student, social worker, nurse....as well as Chris, Ashlyn, myself, Braeden, and our massive double stroller. Kirch does a great job though. They seem very efficient. I am glad that if something were wrong or ever comes up, they will be able to collaborate with PT/OT and social work as necessary.
We have new stats now too:
Weight: 13lbs 12oz
Height: 22 1/2 inches
Head Circumference: 42cm
There was one thing that the attending doctor noticed. Ashlyn still exhibits the asymmetrical tonic neck reflex, but at this point she is not too concerned about it. Many babies don't lose this reflex until around 6 months. It can cause developmental delays and indicate neurological problems if this reflex does not go away though.
Kirch sends out a report of your visit, which I absolutely love. I wish all doctors did that! We are still waiting for our copy, which will go right into Ashlyn's health binder.
We will go back for another appointment when Ashlyn is between 9-12 months to reevaluate her development. Hopefully, by that time, she will be sitting up, crawling, and maybe even walking!
For any other parents out there concerned about developmental issues, here is a great site that I love: Check it out. The developmental pediatricians recommended it at our appointment....but I already had it bookmarked!!