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Katana's story
by Charissa

My daughter, Katana is 10 months old. She was diagnosed with CHD/DDH at her 9 month check up. She has been in her spica cast now for 2 weeks.

Her doctor has told us that he has no way of knowing at this point just how long she will have to be in the cast. The only thing we do know is that in about 4 weeks she will have to be admitted to the hospital (again) to be refitted into another cast for at least another 6 weeks (apparently due to how quickly babies grow they need to keep changing their casts in 6 week increments).

My family also includes my husband and 4 year old daughter. We are all trying to take everything that has come along with Katana's condition one day at a time. We have also decided not to try and guess just how long she will have to be in the cast or count down the days as we will all go crazy! I just keep thinking to myself I will be so so glad when this is all over.

Honestly during the time when Katana was in the hospital and was first put into her cast I was so overwhelmed and stressed that I didn't know how in the world I was going to make it. My husband and I are trying to stay positive and keep our chin's up.

Perhaps our greatest inspiration is Katana herself.

She is such a sweetheart and has taken all of this in her stride. She hardly ever complains and doesn't seem to be bothered nearly as much as we are with her cast. She really has adjusted well. I keep saying I don't know how she does it I truly would be going out of my mind if I was in the position she was!

I have been surfing the web trying to find out as much info as I can about CHD/DDH and was overjoyed to find the Hipkidstory support group. Cassidy's story really touched my heart.

Before just a month ago I had never even heard of this disorder. Once I found out about what Katana would have to go through with the 'traction', 'cast', etc., I felt really alone. It helps me just to know that there are so many other parents dealing with the same issues as me.

I hope that I can in the future offer an encouraging word to someone else just in the same way that I have already been encouraged.

Update from Charissa
"Katana is doing great, she actually just had her spica removed 11/18/05 and is now in the brace. I'm so glad that your web site is available to help parents dealing with CHD, I know it's been a life saver for me. Thanks!! -Charissa"

(If you'd like to leave a message for Charissa, you can do so by joining the Support Group. Membership is free. )