Many of you may have seen the men’s 400 and 4×400 races, both of which I was able to participate in as a high school and collegiate athlete. The adrenalin rush that comes with the setting up of the blocks, to the getting into the set position, the gun being fired, or the handing off of the baton is something that gives me chills watching the sport.
Oscar Pistorius is the athlete who brought us the most inspiration during the track and field events. There has been controversy over whether it’s fair that he has had prosthetic legs that assist him with his running career. But who can fault him for his hard work, dedication, and training for the world’s most watched event? As he stated, putting these legs on someone doesn’t mean they’ll get him there as fast as he goes.
He inspired all of us to use what we have and to not let something such as not having legs stop us from our dreams. We loved what he had to say in his interview about his childhood when his mother told his brother to put his shoes on and for Oscar to put his legs on.
She didn’t hide the obvious. She didn’t sugar coat the truth. It’s a lesson for Randy and I as parents of a child who will face some reality checks.
Jordan isn’t going to be like other kids with a nervous system that allows their legs to move easier than his legs. He will be putting those super boots on, which will allow him to dream of whatever he wants to go after despite the need for a little assistance. When I really think about it, we all depend on something to get us to where we want to go whether it’s braces, wheelchair, bus, or car.
Last week someone must have enrolled us into a race without a lot of warning. It sure felt like it was the 110 meter hurdles. Jordan and I went for a walk to the library and I felt there was something a little off when he didn’t give the sweet lady at the counter his typical grin. He seemed a little somber so we headed back home.
When we arrived he felt a little warm so I took his temperature. Sure enough 101 was a little too high for my liking. Throughout our journey the urology department at Akron Children’s Hospital advised us to be aware of any temperatures 101 and above because they may indicate a urinary tract infection.
The fever was the only symptom we could see so we watched him overnight and decided to call and make an appointment with our pediatrician just in case. The doctor thought it may be a virus because he wasn’t showing any symptoms, but was gracious enough to put my mind at ease taking a culture of his urine.
Sure enough we faced our first UTI. His fevers over the next few days rose to 103 causing our little man to feel down in the dumps. He would attempt to play, but would just lay his sweet head on the floor in exhaustion.
A few days later he had what the doctor’s office thought was a reflux episode, which caused a scare for us. We were relieved when his fever finally broke bringing our little man a little bit more pep in his little crawl.
The final hurdle for the week was a slight rash that turned into an allergic reaction to his medication. The finish line to the week was a relief. We are praying that the UTI was not the start to more, but we know that with the diagnosis of spina bifida it may not be the last.
Either way, we still have a little trooper on our hands. He has plenty of fans in the stands cheering him along his way from event to event. Our coaches in the form of doctors have been with us to train and encourage us as we begin our races.
I’m not sure if we’ll being earning any gold, silver, or bronze, but it’s finishing strong that is the greatest prize in our eyes.
Read more about Megs’ and Randy’s journey of raising a child with spina bifida through her blog, Labor of Love.