Wednesday, March 24, 2010


Brayden was fitted today for his first pair of AFOs. A cast is created for each foot in order to create the proper mold.

The AFOs will not be used on a day-to-day basis, thankfully he does not need them for that kind of assistance. He will use them when attempting a stander. To give him stability in his feet and ankles.

I have to tell you that getting the AFOs is a little difficult for me. Not because of the process of having him fitted in a cast, cut out of them or coming back to get them later. It is because they are so stereotypical of a handicap kid. The handicap kid with leg braces. Yes, I know that this is being totally superficial...I am aware. But the look of them...well not attractive. Although you can order them in fancy patterns and colors (we just ordered blue).

It just seems to add to the whole disability thing in a very visual way.
Now we have to get him some shoes that his chubby feet fit into with the AFOs and possibly some cool AFOs sock (knee socks). He will receive his AFOs in about two weeks. I am sure he will be thrilled.
(sorry the pictures are bad, it was with my phone)


The Henrys said...

Gracie's first pair was hard for me too. When I saw her in them for the first time all I could think about was Forrest Gump.

Getting shoes was very hard! We finally started buying them through the place that made the AFOs. They were more expensive, but that saved a lot of hassle trying to find some that would fit.

Good luck and don't worry. You will used to them very soon.

Junior said...

Junior has some cool camo braces and we found some little hiking style boots to fit over them. In the past we found that Van style shoes were wide enough for his chunky feet.
It is tough at first but for Junior it makes him able to do so much more and keeps his hips inline so they have been well worth it.

Slinki said...

Hello from Australia :). My 1 yr old nephew has disabilities very similar to Brayden's. Unfortunately, he is terminal, as his sister was. I realise this is hard for you, but I am sitting here totally rapt that your Brayden has the chance to walk.

Shannon said...

We had Wavey fit for her second pair 2 weeks ago. (I hope you liked OS. We have always had great service there.)

The Shoe Train in Potomac in the Cabin John shopping center is FANTASTIC for fitting AFOs. The owner, Ed, is superb.

Anonymous said...

Hi, there.
I came across your blog and I work with children with special needs. There are shoes called hatchbacks ( specifically for AFOs for kids. They are very expensive, but are well built and don't look like "orthopedic" shoes. They look just like little boys shoes! Good luck!

Mo said...

Wear them proud Brayden!!

I know there are shoes specifically for fitting over AFO's (like hatchbacks)but the fact is they are HEAVY, bulky and pricey. ALL of Oia's shoes worn with her AFO's have been from Stride Rite. They come in wide and extra wide and many of those shoes have velcro straps which make it easy to slide the foot into the shoe. The straps on the shoe can be lengthen by a shoe repair so that they wrap over the AFO. Stride Rite is pricey too but they are lightweight and most of their shoes have a very soft flexible sole. We love them!

Good luck!

littleharves said...

i love his chubby feet! harvey had chubby feet too xxx anne

Wherever HE Leads We'll Go said...

Isn't it funny the things that we struggle with? For me it was the wheelchair (ours does not look anything like a stroller it looks like a wheelchair). I felt like we might as well have a neon sign over us - special needs child here!

Emily has AFO's and she does have to wear them all the time. She has had them for a while so I cannot remember what I thought about her first pair. You are right - they definitely stick out to people.

She also has very chubby feet so buying shoes has always been a struggle for us. I can find ones that fit, but have a hard time spending outrageous amounts of money on shoes that she isn't walking in. Is that wrong?