Namine has been looking forward to today for quite some time. Today is the day she had her cast removed. Unfortunately, her leg still has a slight fracture.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. Before her appointment to see the orthopedic surgeon, Namine had physical therapy. Weeks ago, that was a problem; it simply hurt her too much to stand. Weeks ago, Namine referred to her leg as “my broken leg,” because that’s what it was. But even though it was still in a cast, she hasn’t thought of it as broken for a while now. She’s referred to it as “my casted leg,” because that, as far as she’s concerned, is the only problem now. That, and not being able to wear both shoes.
Namine knew in advance that there existed the possibility that she wouldn’t get her cast off. It all hinged on whether or not her leg still had a fracture, and she understood that another series of x-rays would reveal the truth.
As it turned out, x-rays showed that her leg is still broken. We won’t see the doctor again until September, though, and he didn’t feel that the break was bad enough to merit being stuck in a cast for another six months.
Namine already has braces — ankle-foot orthotics, or AFOs, to be precise — which she uses in therapy. Her feet are still curved, despite having undergone surgery twice (although that in itself quite the tale of misery and woe), and they need the AFOs’ assistance to make sure Namine is standing and walking flat on her soles. Since they are made for keeping her feet and legs stable, the doctor instructed Namine to keep the braces on all day.
It’s fortuitous that the break in Namine’s leg is close to her ankle, and therefore able to benefit from the foot-ankle stability her braces already offer. If she’d broken higher up — say, by her knee — she would have had no choice but to keep the cast on. It’s also fortuitous that Jessica and Namine had just come from therapy, and therefore had Namine’s braces with them, otherwise the rest of the day might have played out completely differently.
As it played out, though, Namine was able to get rid of the cast and wear her brace instead. She already has to wear the brace for therapy, so this isn’t so far out of her comfort zone. What’s more important is the reason why Namine has to wear the brace, and she understands that. As much as possible, we’ve always explained as much as we could, especially when it comes to medical procedures and instructions. Namine, for her part, has always taken her medical conditions seriously, and this is no different.