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New AFO Brace

Posted Sep 22 2008 8:32pm

Today I got my new AFO brace. It is much different from my last one. The one on the left is the first one and the one on the right is my new one. The new one has an open heel and is hinged at the ankle and rests at a less than 90 degree angle which allows my foot to move. The first brace did not allow my foot to move. Unfortunately that "stylish" lining that is in my new brace is made of a material that my very sensitive skin is allergic to so I need to cover it with cotton. The left ankle hinge is going to take some getting used to. I told the doc today that it bothered me but he said to break it in for two weeks and if its still a problem he will adjust it then. There is also a spot on the orthotic where the plastic ends that is a bit annoying, but it seems to be related to my shoe as well so maybe if I find the right shoes to wear that problem will go away. Other than those little problems I really think this brace is going to help me. There is already a noticeable difference in the way I walk. Tomorrow I am going to clean out my closet in an attempt to practice some of the things I would need to do at work to see if the brace is that helpful. One of my limitations is that my foot would drop when I tried to climb steps while carrying something or while climbing a ladder. The main function of the AFO brace (ankle- foot orthotic) is to correct foot drop so hopefully that will change. The point of cleaning my closet is that I have a bunch of plastic bins for my prop kit that are found on most prop trucks so if I can move them around without a problem I should be fine. I also have a shelf in my closet that I need a ladder to reach so if I can put a bin on the shelf and pull a bin from the shelf I will be good to go! Plus my closet really needs to be cleaned out!

I went to visit the set of the show I worked on in July and told them I am still available. The guy was honest with me that he needs someone who can pull the bins off the shelves of the truck and even get on the truck (which is very hard for me- but I am hoping the brace will change that) in a timely manner. They only get to hire additionals on heavy prop days and they need someone who can do the job and he knows me too well that I would over extend myself to do the job, which is what I did last year and why I lost my job. I appreciated his honesty and I completely understand. I told him about the brace I was picking up today and he said I was more than welcome to stop by any time and practice getting on the truck and getting to the bins and making sure I can handle pulling the bins off the shelves. When he is sure that I can do it he will give me work, which is another reason why I am cleaning out my closet tomorrow. I am practicing there first before I go to the truck. If I got hurt on their prop truck on my own time he would get in trouble. I want to make sure I can do it before I go there so I don't get anyone in trouble.

I am feeling much better now, if I had a sinus infection or just a cold, I think it is gone now. I took two days of doing nothing but sleeping and resting and it seems to have helped. I just need to make sure I am taking my vitamins everyday, that is something I have slacked on lately which is probably why I got the cold or whatever it was. Though I have had a weird headache today, nothing major though, just a bit unusual. Don't really know how to describe it.
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