A few months ago, a PhD student from Baylor contacted us and asked if Kanyon could participate in his research for his dissertation. He was doing some different data collecting on kids with CP that do Hippotherapy. We had to make 2 trips down to Waco; one for a pre-test, then do 8 weeks of our regular Hippotherapy, and then back for the post test. One of the main reasons I said yes so quickly was because my cousin Julie lives there and she and Sam had just had a new baby and I REALLY wanted to meet baby John Bradley! My awesome mom went with me to help with Jaylie while we were doing the testing. We drove to Waco on a Sunday afternoon and got there in time for Kanyon and Callie to play outside.
klp wanted her to sit in his lap! Ha!
Meanwhile, Quinn was in Paris at Clint and Rachel's doing cool things like being a Ninja Turtle all day!
So i was TOTALLY nervous about the test because I knew he was going to have to wear a mouthpiece. And if you remember, this kid had MAJOR oral aversion. Still does in a lot of ways. I mean, wouldn't let us feed him/brush his teeth til he was 3??!!! And this mouthpiece thing was a deal breaker...he had to do it to participate. I didn't want to waste the trip, and I didn't want to leave the student hanging. So i'm stressing about the mouthpiece then the bomb gets dropped that he has to wear a nose plug too!!! WHAT????!!! They were monitoring oxygen consumption and had to only have him breathing about of his mouth!
I was reminded, yet again, what a stud my kid is. He never batten an eye, y'all. I was so proud. I feel silly because he ALWAYS rises to the occasion and you'd think by now I would expect that from him, but I still get nervous and expect the worst and then he goes and does his Grand Kanyon Thing!
He had to ride this horse simulator thing first. Basically a wiggly stool.
Then they gave him the royal treatment during his break and brought out this big chair and put him in front of a big screen TV. ha!
Mom and Jaylie dropped in to say hello (and take our picture)
Then came the doozy. Walking on a treadmill. We had to hold him up of course, but he had to keep his feet moving for 5 min. and he did it! Ideally, they needed him to do it twice so we did it again and he made it 4 min. He was such a trooper. The guy in the dress clothes is the PhD student's supervisor and his words were, "This kid has the heart of a champion". So very, very true.
This whole thing took almost 3 hours and the boy worked HARD. So he could've gotten whatever he wanted.....DVD in the car??? SURE!
Before we left, mom got some great pics of me and Jules with our kids (minus Quinn). So fun to be with Julie and watch our kids play!
Julie hid Callie's paci in her shirt for the pictures, but Callie decided she needed it! Ha!
So 8 weeks later, me, mom, Jaylie, and Kanyon headed back to Waco to do the post test......(my mom should win an award for being my sidekick on all these Dr. visits and everything else me and Kanyon drag her to.....she even drives us!)
My sweet boy has a hard time seeing, so this DVD in the lap thing is perfect for him....topped off with some Goldfish!
"Ya Ya" (thats what Callie calls klp) and Callie were happy to see each other! We headed straight to the park when we got there.
Gay Gay the play slave!
This time we spent the night on Monday night so we got to watch Jules do her news thing! Fun! Proud Aunt Gay Gay!
Everyone in their PJ's the next morning...
We were getting dressed to go back to the park....Callie helping klp get his shoes on.
klp can't resist Callie's curly hair!
I was less nervous this time, but still so proud of my hard workin' Kan Man. This time while he was on the horse thing with all that junk on his face, head, and mouth he was SINGING!! ha! Just humming along the whole time!
He was SOOOO excited to have that chair and TV again! ha!
For some reason he couldn't quite keep up as well this time. We did the first 5 minutes but didn't do it again the 2nd time. He was fine, he just didn't quite have the pep in his step this time. They didn't really have to have him do it the second time so we called it a day. WHEW! Mama was tired!! ha!
A perk to traveling with Gay Gay is that she thought Kanyon needed a treat after all that hard work. So we made a trip to Toys R Us before we left. What did he pick out?????? The mermaid. He loved it! He also found some cool sharks (he calls them "Sharp attacks") on the clearance rack so we ended up with both (another perk to traveling with Gay Gay).
With his beloved mermaid. I have to say there was some pretty major disappointment when we got home and went swimming the next day and he wanted to take the mermaid in the water with him and I had to break the news to him that she didn't go in the water. Doesn't make much sense, huh? A mermaid that doesn't go in the water. Crazy talk. Luckily the sharks do, so he's still lovin' the sharks!
The hilariousness of this: crooked glasses, chip crumbs all over his face and shirt, mouth open GOOD SLEEPIN!
I'm not gonna lie, this was kind of a whip having to drag Jaylie (and therefore my dear mother) with us on a 4 hour drive, overnight trip...... but it was worth it to hang with cousins and I really am happy to participate in anything that can further prove how beneficial hippo therapy is for kids like Kanyon. There's a real need for hard fast data on this type of therapy because insurance companies aren't wanting to cover it because they don't have "proof" that it works. While all of us parents see the "proof" everyday, thats just not good enough for insurance. So, things like this are really important and we are more than happy to do our part and hopefully in a tiny way, make it possible for more kids to ride!