DDH: Breaking my heart

My smallest child has the ability to emotionally destroy me, she can break my heart with a simple action.

Today she wandered away from my side in a cinema aisle after the act of watching a full feature-length movie became all too much for her.  To amuse herself and me she would wobble five steps away and then turn and run, as best one can with a dislocated hip, and throw herself into my arms, finishing the act with a high-pitched giggle of joy.  I am not sure the rest of the movie theatre appreciated it but every time she collapsed into my arms with a whoop of happiness my face lit up and tears threatened to cascade down my cheeks.

BB can’t walk more than a few steps without wobbling and then hitting the ground, her hip throws her off-balance and she spends most of the day hugging the carpet.  She has become so accustomed to falling that she rarely cries, instead she merely picks herself up, brushes herself down and wobbles on.

BB’s unique way of walking is testament to her strength, she shouldn’t be able to walk, she should have been diagnosed before she even tried to learn; but she wasnt and so she taught herself against the odds to get those legs moving.  Emma, a fellow blogger, new friend and mother of a child with ddh captured her child, Erin, doing her wobbling walk as to not forget how it was before the spica cast and so I have done the same.

I cant wait to say goodbye to the falls, but part of me will miss the wobble.

(Concerned readers: please note I don’t often play fetch with my daughter, we normally embark in educational games, because playing fetch with your toddler would be wrong *coughs*)




37 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Notmyyearoff
    Jan 22, 2012 @ 23:00:42

    Blimey, she’s gorgeous!!


  2. mdmarine
    Jan 22, 2012 @ 23:04:44

    Oh my goodness. My daughter’s DDH was discovered at 15 mos. She’s set to come out of her cast a week from Monday. Finally. We also took a video of her wobble walking before surgery. It’s a terrible video – but the similarities between your cutie and ours are so striking. Here’s our video:


    • janeblackmore
      Jan 23, 2012 @ 22:13:09

      It is the exact same walk isnt it, scary, I imagine I could recongnise a child with hip dysplasia from 50 yards away now – hope all is well with your little one x


  3. The Mad House
    Jan 22, 2012 @ 23:24:56

    She is such a beautiful girl. I have been thinking of you all. Can you send me your address.


  4. plus2point4
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 07:26:00

    Kids are very resilient aren’t they? I know of a mum who’s little girl wasn’t diagnosed until she was walking too.Thinking of you 🙂


  5. emma
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 07:56:21

    Jane, you know you are all constantly in my thoughts at the moment. I am very intrigued and can’t imagine when Erin does find her feet again that the wobble will be gone. I have also been thinking about how tall she will look when she comes out of cast as it has been a long time since seeing her vertical! Sending lots of virtual hugs.


  6. wibbly wobbly
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 08:44:04

    I don’t have video of my wobbly walk but in 1964 my mother noted in my baby book that I, aged two, “was still walking on tippy toes”. (I had started walking at 11 months). I also, according to the book “walked like a drunkard” till I was nearly three! My mother, sadly no longer around, never did know that her second born, soon to become ballet dancer (starting ballet aged 2 1/2), gymnast, and later on in life mother of 3 (all natrual births) and multiple marathon runner had severe bi-lateral Hip Dysplasia. I have only recently found these quotes in my baby book and realised the poingnancy of them. It was there staring at us full in the face and we never knew! BB has done what comes naturally – adapted to cope with the situation, but luckily she lives in an age where these things tend to get noticed (albeit in her case, a little late – better than 46 years late) and dealt with. Lovely to have a record of that wobbly walk – a very special memory.


    • vivian
      Jan 23, 2012 @ 20:54:08

      Do you have, or have you had any pain? My daughter has severe hip dysplasia and I wonder how she would be if we hadn’t done the surgery. She was diagnosed at the age of 5


      • janeblackmore
        Jan 23, 2012 @ 20:57:21

        How is she now vivian?

      • annickhollins
        Jan 24, 2012 @ 14:58:34

        Hello Vivian,

        That was the funniest thing about all of this – I had no pain really. All through my life I just ‘went and did’ without thinking that there was anything abnormal going on. I now know, from having joined the ‘Hip Women Yahoo Group’, that there are others out there that have suffered severe disabling pain throughout their lives, wrongly diagnosed for years etc., as well as being told it was all in the mind, but for some reason, I was smiled upon. I look back and can pick out ‘hip pain’ which at the time was I presumed was from some gymnastic move, or whatever, but I now realise it was my dysplasia, but I had never, ever dreamt then that it was something so serious. It was a real shock when I was diagnosed as I thought I had pulled a hip flexor.

        Jacq posted that a 20 year old has it uncorrected – she will, if she doesn’t get it sorted, be looking at full hip replacements in her twenties or thirties, which is, obviously, not great. That worries me, and it is something that I am trying to help in raising the awareness of Adult Hip Dysplasia. So little is known about it.

        How is your little girl doing now? Such a hard thing for you to have to go through. At least for me, it was me that was going through it, I wasn’t having to explain to a child what was going on. Having said that I probably acted just like a child post-op, not doing as I was told, and being bloody minded about being independent!

      • janeblackmore
        Jan 24, 2012 @ 17:59:42

        Hope all goes well Vivian

    • janeblackmore
      Jan 23, 2012 @ 22:16:08

      you are amazing!

      out of interest what would be the danger if you hadnt had the surgery?


      • annickhollins
        Jan 24, 2012 @ 14:44:10

        Hi Jane,

        The danger was that osteoarthritis was setting into my left hip (from the marathon running!) and my right hip would have done the same, which would have meant that I would have been looking at having a full hip replacement to both hips within the next couple of years, dependent on how quickly the hips deteriorated. The op that I had (PAO) uses your own hip socket, so extends the life of your hip by probably 10 to 15 years. I will undoubtedly need a FHR on my left, but hopefully, because the surgery was done before damage had set into my right, I might get away without one on that side. Keep fingers crossed. From the looks of the video, BB seems to wobbly on just one side – am I right, or is it both hips? She is such a bonny lass, despite all that is being thrown at her.

      • janeblackmore
        Jan 24, 2012 @ 17:59:07

        It is just her left hip, other is formed normally.

        and yes – she is a dream – when she is not yelling atr me!

        still cant believe you ran marathons on it!

        Thanks for all your support x

  7. Jacq
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 09:01:56

    What a cutie, even with the wobble in her walk. And what on earth is wrong with playing fetch with your toddler? It’s quite normal isn’t it? Maybe I’ve just been a dog owner for too long?
    There is a girl in her 20’s at DS’s nursery who has uncorrected congenital HD and she walks pretty much exactly like you DD does. It ust be very limiting for such a pretty young girl. Her mother didn’t get it sorted when she was a baby because she was worried about the GA, and from what I gather she still exerts the same sort of influence. It’s pretty sad really 😦


  8. Blue Sky
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 09:06:45

    She so cute and she’s just getting on with her life, complete with wobble: lesson for all of us adults perhaps who complain so much?


  9. speccy
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 09:09:27

    What a wonderful wee pet- full of determination and personality. She’ll be fine


  10. The Moiderer
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 09:28:10

    omg she is totally gorgeous! Is her op scheduled now?


  11. Linda
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 09:30:22

    My, what a beautiful, determined little girl she is. And although once you know about her HD you can see her walk is a bit too wobbly, I can quite see how it wouldn’t have been picked up at first – let’s face it all early toddler walks are pretty wobbly.


  12. sarsm
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 10:55:41

    She’s stunning!!


  13. Emma @mummymummymum
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 14:19:47

    Awww Jane, BB is beautiful, and so grown up! I have been thinking of you all as well. xxxxx


  14. Caroline
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 19:36:39

    Doesn’t she look like you?! I’m not normally good and seeing who kids look like but she’s yours alright! I love the way that you write about her, I read this this morning on the way to work and have been thinking about it all day – such lovely words, you have an easy honest style that comes right from the heart.


  15. h0pefulmummy
    Feb 01, 2012 @ 07:14:33

    so very cute!
    i found you through the love all blogs special needs showcase.
    watching your daughter’s wee clip brings tears to my eyes – watching a little one stumble and trip (ddh or not!) will always make me cry as i will never see my little one walk…
    enjoy those steps of her – every one is precious


  16. liveotherwise
    Feb 17, 2012 @ 00:41:37

    thanks for sending this and other posts in for the carnival of differences. post is up now. I hope all is going well.


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