Friday, 14 September 2007

14Sep07 - 2 Peas in a Pod

Today was Lucy's last day at school until a week on Monday. On Sunday we are going down to the Scotson Advance Clinic ( in East Grinstead. We will be attending the clinic from Monday to Friday and it will be Lucy's 6th visit but only my 3rd as it is difficult to get the time off work. The days normally consist of learning new exercises and then an hour in an oxygen chamber(Like a decrompression chamber)(Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy). The excercises are very slow and very gentle up and down movements of the fingers in a series of different pressure points on the chest, abdomen and back. These movements stimulate increased blood flow in the tiny capillaries around the pressure points bringing oxygen and stimulating areas that would not otherwise thrive. The purpose of the treatment as quoted on the clinic's website is as follows:

"The Scotson Technique first seeks to reveal and address the frequently ignored but complex weaknesses of the thoracic and abdominal respiratory muscles that are a hidden cause of structural and functional abnormalities and the broad range of symptoms associated with brain injuries.

By treating the respiratory system in close connection with other muscle groups, its aims are:

- To improve blood supply, nutrition and nervous response to under-developed muscles and to the connective tissues between the bones.
- To improve the electrical connection between the brain and the muscular skeletal system.
- To reduce spinal compaction and improve blood supply to the nerve connections from the spine to the respiratory muscles and the internal organs.
- To improve the body's general and cerebral metabolism.
- To steadily create better and more normal structure which leads to more normal movement and understanding.

The Technique works with every child and results are maintained when the therapy is discontinued."

The therapy is very time consuming and when you start the therapy you commit to 1-2 hours of therapy 7 days a week. Again Dawn has largely been responsible for this particularly when I haven't been at the clinic to learn the excercises. Lucy over time has got used to the excercises and often she will become quite relaxed during the them. When we first started she was always unhappy and would cry and arch her back all the way through and it made it difficult to see how the therapy could ever work. From our own experience the therapy has definitely made a difference and we can also see a big change in Laila since she started going. Laila used to have quite a pronounced grunt just when breathing, caused I think by weak muscles in her chest and throat. The grunt has all but disappeared and she just looks so well it is amazing. The therapy is not cheap (£600 per week) especially taking into account accomodation if you need it. It can work out about £1000 per week. Fortunately we can stay with my Aunt who lives very close to the clinic which keeps the cost down (Thanks Aunty Mary). There is a chance to make Lucy's life a little more comfortable and happy, so the money is worth every penny. The most amazing thing is that money for Lucy's treatment has largely been provided by unexpected donations and fundraising organised by friends, family and in some cases strangers. This is a small miracle in itself and we will be enternally grateful to all those people. The generosity we have experienced not just financially but also with time and emotion has at times been overwhelming.

Lucy has touched peoples lives in a unique and profound way that any normal person would not be able to do. She will continue to do this throughout her life and she will change attitudes and prejudices of those she meets without words and without any effort. I can see now that my little Lucy has been given a very special gift.


fairenuff said...

I LOVE the pictures - 2 peas in a pod indeed!

Dawn said...

We learnt it all from you Sam. The camera now goes everywhere with us!!!