It's official! Evan is officially a helmet (or, to be precise, docband) wearing boy!
Yesterday was the big day. We had gotten his final scan last week, and luckily it's quick turn around time since the company is actually based here in Phoenix, with the bands made in Tempe. Ed was able to sneak away from work so that we could all be together for this important event.
Somehow, regardless of our appointment time, Evan always arrives tired, and today was no exception. He was only able to get a handful of "power" naps beforehand, which made me a little worried for how he'd do.
As soon as we got to our room, our Orthotist, Barb, came in with the band and strapped it on. Evan didn't give any real indications at first that he even realized he was wearing it. He wore it for about 20 minutes, to see how the fit was and what needed to be adjusted. After Barb left, Evan kept turning his head left and right, probably trying to figure out this new sensation on his head.
The band was a little low along the eyes and made his face look a little squished (something they took care of!).
Looking down on the top, you can see the big gap on the back left. The band works by placing light pressure on the parts of Evan's head that stick out further (his back right and front left). It's about the same amount of pressure his head gets from sitting in his carseat. Since it is "holding" those parts of the head in place, when Evan's head grows, it will grow into the gaps of the band, rounding out the flat spots.
He did start to get a little fussy, but it wasn't really the band's fault; he was just so tired. Ed did a good job trying to keep him entertained.
After the time was up, Barb came back in and made some marks where the band needed to be cut. Then she took it off and looked for red marks. She would come back in about 30 minutes to see which marks were still there, which would tell her where the foam inside needed to be shaved/softened.
I soaked in a few last minutes with my helmet-less boy, cuddling his sweet head. Then, it was time for much needed nap.
He only got about 15 minutes before he had to wake up for his final fitting, but his mood was much improved afterwards! We checked the fit a last time, learned care instructions (23 hours a day, hour off to clean baby and band for probably about 8-9 weeks) and we were off.
Walking back to the car, it was so odd to see our little boy with this white thing on his head. He honestly just didn't look like himself, which was weird. Carrying him, I had to be careful of not bopping myself in the face, and I couldn't lean down to kiss that sweet head anymore. We'll have to get used to some new norms.
Last night, after he went to bed, I immediately jumped into action to get his helmet decorated, so that it would look less medical and more special and fun. I painted the whole band white, then applied decals I had gotten designed for me by a company that specializes in band decorations. Three plus hours of paint and modge podge later, I was finally able to go to bed. After feeding him at 4:30, I got back up to add some more modge podge so that he could wear his band today like he's supposed to!
I'm tired, but it was well worth the effort. He does look awfully cute. Here's a little 360 degree tour :)
Verdict? All is well. Hopefully the rest of his band journey will be just as easy.