So says his eye doctor. This past week my little dude had his eyes cut into for a 5th time.
These surgeries never get easier for us. They are always stressful, even though they may be somewhat routine. To clear the air, these are not cosmetic surgeries. For the first few years his doctor thought Judah's brain might shut down his left eye because he was favoring his right. Judah cocks his head to look primarily out of his right eye. In doing so, the left eye crosses in severely. These surgeries have been to shorten and/or lengthen his inner and outer eye muscles to train them to look straight in hopes that he will use both eyes equally. After the first four surgeries, that left eye continued being stubborn and crossing in. Even after hours/days/months of patching the right eye.
Judah is coming up on his 9th birthday in October. The doctor said by age nine, a person's vision is pretty well set. So this 5th surgery was basically the last resort. thankfully, his brain did not shut the left eye down. There is a chance that this surgery will have been a waste of time, but it is a gamble we decided to take since it is his last chance. If not, he will have crooked eyes, and we are ok with that. Make fun of him for it and I will knock your eyes crooked though.
Shortly after Judah was born we were told that by age 9 most of the medical issues common amongst children with Down syndrome pretty much subside. We have definitely found that to be true and we are thankful that all of the issues he has had are indeed subsiding. We are not in the clear yet, and we understand that there are so many others that have much greater medical needs. It helps us to stay grounded and keep on trucking. Judah sure does not know the difference. He was all smiles and playing with his action figures by the evening of this surgery.
To all the parents of younger children with Down syndrome (and/or other special needs) who have medical issues, you are not alone. Thankfully we live in a time where these issues can be addressed and hopefully corrected.