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Talipes | Struggling to find First Walker shoes.

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As I’ve mentioned, our darling boy is doing well with his walking – despite being born with Bilateral Talipes.

We’ve always just wanted Mr Eli to wear his Converse – just like Daddy (and occasionally Mummy too!). But we noticed that the Con’s just weren’t offering him much support around his ankles; and frankly, his new red Hi-Top’s are absolutely massive a wee bit big.

Eli’s Size 4 Black Converse trainers were too small, his toes are end the toe cap, so he had been wearing his new Red Hi Top Converse – which are a 5. We went to Clarks at the weekend where Eli was measured – his feet came up as a size 3F. The assistant did advise that Clarks sizing does vary against branded shoes, but it did make us think that Eli is really not wearing correct footwear right now. He requires a pair of shoes that will support his feet as he gains confidence in his walking, but also a pair that will encourage him to keep walking. The Converse he has right now seem to deter his walking as they’re ill-fitting, so he’s been mainly in stocking feet. Obviously, he can’t go outside the house like this, so we need to find him so First Walker shoes.

Here the issue begins…

It’s very common for children with Talipes to have odd-sized feet or feet that are on the smaller side. One foot could be a size 4, while the other foot could be a size 6. Meaning many children are bought two pairs of shoes to ensure they have correct fitting shoes for each foot. Clarks DO offer a discount for children affected however – you can read all about the Clark’s Odd Sized Feet Scheme on the STEPS charity website. Luckily, Eli’s feet do match up perfectly – but they are small. We didn’t realise until we started looking at the First Walker shoes in the shop… all of the shoes start at a size 4. The Pre-Walker/Cruiser shoes start at a size 3. But the sole is very thin on these styles and there isn’t the support on the shoe for a child who IS indeed walking.

We were looking online last night. Call me ridiculous if you will, but there are A LOT of boring or frankly unfashionable First Walker shoes out there. I know Eli is not par-taking in a fashion show, but we do take pride in our little man’s appearance, he has his own style. Also, these shoes are not cheap, so we want to make sure we’re all happy with them as he’ll have them on most of the day.

We don’t want velcro – we’re not a velcro family. We’d prefer Eli to be in Desert Boots, Brogue style shoes or at a push, some fashionable trainers. Take a look at the styles we’ve seen so far below…

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First Walker Shoes, Desert Boots in Brown £36.00 – Click here to purchase at Clarks.com

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First Walker Shoes, Desert Boots in Brown £36.00 – Click here to purchase at Clarks.com

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First Walker Shoes, Crazy Crew in Khaki, £36.00 – Click here to purchase at Clarks.com

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Digby, Zip up Brogue Boots, £40.00 – Available from StartRite.com

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Sullivan Brogue Shoes, WAS £49 NOW £18.00 – Available from StartRite.com

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Sullivan Brogue Shoes, WAS £49 NOW £18.00 – Available from StartRite.com

As you will notice, all of the lovely shoes above start at a size 4. So we’re in a wee pickle. If you have purchased from StartRite.com before, do their shoes match the size guide of Clarks? I’m so tempted to just get the size 4F shoes, especially considering the rate of growth; but can’t be sure that they will fit Eli correctly. So would ideally like to go into a shop to be able to have them expertly fitted.

Can you recommend any other stores where you can buy similar styles to the above? That perhaps start at ‘Clarks size 3F’ or the measured equivalent?  (And styles that don’t cost an arm-and-a-leg, to boot).

MM.

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PART TWO: Cramping, Spotting and an emergency ultrasound scan.

We have GOOD NEWS!!

We went for the second scan at the Early Pregnancy Unit today – just under two weeks since my first scan. (You can read what happened during our first scan, here: PART ONE: Cramping, Spotting and an emergency ultrasound scan.). We were so anxious for the re-scan, for obvious reasons. But the Sonographer was able to find the baby straight away, with a very very healthy  and strong heartbeat. My DP immediately had tears. I however, was just so relieved – I can’t even tell you. The heartbeat was this absolutely mesmerising flickering movement within the sac.

I was measured at around 7-8 weeks. Which by my dates works out right – infact according to my dates I’m 8 weeks +0 today.

So so happy!!

We just can’t wait until the 12 week scan now – to get more of a look at our developing baby!

MM.

 [EDIT – I also wanted to add that I have not had any further spotting or cramps since Week 6].

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PART ONE: Cramping, Spotting and an emergency ultrasound scan.

So I have a few things to talk about since my last post. I had some cramping, that initially started mild. The type of pains you have when you feel AF just around the corner. Then on 30th November the cramping was getting much worse and was lasting around 5 minutes. The cramping was really low down, almost at my pubic bone. I googled the cramping and found that is was completely normal! PHEW! It’s just all your muscles stretching.

But then yesterday I went to the loo at around10:30am at work. I noticed a TINY amount of brown spotting. But the spotting mixed with my cramps (and still not knowing when my first Midwife appointment will be!) made me call the doctors. My doctor gave me a telephone appointment and referred me to the EPU (Early Pregnancy Unit) at Broomfield hospital, Chelmsford.

I was told to arrive at my 10:30am appointment with a relatively full bladder. We arrived at the hospital early, at 10:05am with the full bladder.  Time ticked on and I was eventually seen at 12noon! Needless to say I thought I was going to pass out with the pain of having to wait all that time with said full bladder. I had emptied my bladder, slightly, to relieve the pain, FOUR times whilst waiting to be seen. When I went in for the scan, I was told I was ‘too full’ for a normal scan and so had to empty my bladder completely (really pleased I sat there in agony for all that time and didn’t need to be!) and a Transvaginal Ultrasound Scan was used instead. The scan was uncomfortable, but wasn’t painful.

Unfortunately, the news we had this morning wasn’t good. The Sonographer was able to locate a small sac (dating me at 6 weeks) but could not find a heartbeat. We were told that it could either be too early to find the heartbeat or it could have been because my bladder was so full its altered the scanning capabilites. I have to go back for a further scan on Friday 15th December. We’re feeling really really hopeful. And I just have to make sure that my bladder is not as full next time!

Fingers crossed for us!

MM.