Tuesday, August 11, 2009

"Don't Mind Me, Im Just Reshaping My Head"

I cannot believe its already been 3 weeks and I'm just now posting about "Baby K's" DOC Band. Isn't she precious!!

The flowers are vellum scrap booking stickers and the "too cute" is a scrapbook rub-on. (This is my first time to use a rub-on and it works great.) I just rubbed it on and then put a coat of clear nail polish on top. I'm now on the hunt for Pink Texas Tech stickers, so we can get her DOC Band ready for College Football season.

In case you are wondering what the whole DOC Band thing is about..... Basically, the back of Baby K's head is really flat. She was breech and 10 pounds, so she ran out of room. Her beautiful lil head was crammed inside my belly and didn't round out like it's supposed it. The DOC Band is "hollow" inside and guides her head to round out. It sounds like a cosmetic thing (and some insurance companies actually view it that way.) If the flatness isn't repaired it can cause the side of a baby's head to not be shaped right and can even effect the front of their head and face. Being able to wear glasses or a sport's helmet in the future can be effected. I'm sure the folks at Cranial Technologies wouldn't be thrilled with my explanation, but you get the general message. Most flattening can be repaired with sleep positioning, rolling up a towel and placing it behind baby's back while he sleeps. Most Pediatricians will tell you if it's necessary with your baby.

We have actually been down the whole Plagiocephaly road before with "Bug." I remember when I was told that she would have to wear a DOC band. I was devastated. All I could see was a perfect and beautiful baby and I thought that her having to wear a plastic "helmet" to fix it would be the worst thing in the world. I quickly learned how wrong I was.

This time around, I could actually tell early on that Baby K would need one. Thankfully, the technology has advanced a lot in 2 years. When "Bug" got hers they actually had to make a "casting" of her head. That was not a fun experience for her or mommy and daddy. They put a stocking over her head and went strip by strip of plaster until a mold of her head was made. Now they have a computer that takes a quick picture and PRESTO we have a DOC Band baby!

The great news is that Baby K will probably only have to wear hers 8-12 weeks. She has already made some major progress. Last visit to Cranial Technologies, she had grown 4mm in one week!Woo Hoo She hasn't adjusted to her band as quickly as Bug did but she tolerates it.

The DOC Band experience has taught me a VERY valuable lesson about parenting. Most children will stop and ask why she has to wear a "helmet." I am amazed at how some parents react. Pulling their child away and hushing them. Why? I'm a parent. I know that children are curious. I guess some parents think that I will be offended.

I think these moments in childhood are where we learn (or don't learn, depending on how our parents handle it) to treat people differently, just because they have something different about them. I am confident that most people would be willing to educate a child on whatever they have going on that's not "the norm." I am thrilled when I can open a child's eyes to something new. I tell them to touch the back of their head and say it feels round doesn't it? I tell them that the back of Baby K's head isn't as round yet and her magic hat is helping her. Then I explain that the good part is that it doesn't hurt AND we get to decorate it with stickers. That's all it takes. A 2 minute conversation where they learn something new AND learn that Baby K is just like they are.

I was lucky to grow up in a family that didn't make a big deal out of other people's differences. My dad is one of the most loving and accepting people I have ever met. I am so thankful for that. His respect for people and animals has rubbed off on me and thankfully, I am trying my hardest to teach my children the same thing.


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