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Family Foto Friday ~ One year anniversary of Sara’s DDH Diagnosis

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August 31 marks exactly one year since my world was turned upside down with Sara’s DDH {developmental dysplasia of the hip} diagnosis. I know in the grand scheme of things, her diagnosis was more of an annoyance and an inconvenience than anything earth-shattering like a death or a serious illness would have been, but it was still H.A.R.D. I was a wreck for a long time. And watching her walk is a constant reminder that her struggle may not be over.


To commemorate this “special” day, I made a picture video of Sara’s journey. It makes me cry to watch this video. She’s not really all alone at all, but I thought some of the words from Taylor Swift’s song were fitting, and I made great friends with my 8 year old for choosing it. Enjoy!

I also uploaded a video of Sara running and walking now, 9 months post surgery. I think her walk is almost normal. Her run still makes me cringe a little, but she JUST started running, so I’m sure it will improve just like her walking has drastically improved since she started walking again post surgery.

Sara is now in a holding pattern. Her next follow up appointment is November 12 at the University of Iowa. Her surgeon told us at our last visit that she will be extremely lucky if her surgery last November will be her one and only. He fully expects that she will need more extensive work sometime in the next few years.

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About Michelle Marine

Michelle Marine is the author of How to Raise Chickens for Meat, a long time green living enthusiast and rural Iowa mom of four. An avid traveler, Michelle has lived on three different continents and has driven all four kids across the entire USA (by herself!). She loves sharing farm-to-table recipes, their family travel adventures, and gardening and homesteading tips on her popular lifestyle blog, SimplifyLiveLove.com.


  1. blankmichelle says

    She is a very cute and happy child. Love the video. You can tell she has a very loving family. Best medicine ever. I will say a pray for her.

  2. blankPam says

    Sara, is awesome. Grace is awesome also. They have such drive and determination and have taught us all so much with their smiles and exuberance of life. Nothing has slowed them down. Grace will soon have her braces off Oct 3rd. Can’t wait to see Mom letting her take a bath! Thanks for sharing. Our prayers are still reaching out to you.

    • blankMichelle says

      Thanks for the update, Pam. Our doc said Sara could take her brace off and take baths each day. Grace can’t do that? Can’t wait until this adventure is permanently behind us all – if it ever will be.

  3. blankmjskit says

    Even with that horrible cast on, Sara always had that beautiful smile! It was probably harder on you than her. It was so good seeing her run! How exciting is that?!!?!!! Thanks for sharing the post and the videos! You go Sara!!!!

  4. blankAmel says

    My daughter is 15 months old diagnosis with DDH few days ago and I am so sad and devastated she will have an open reduction next week I am so scared and I am looking for a second opinion I am lost .
    I want to know how is your daughter now and what kind of surgery did she have .
    Thanks a lot for this blog it helps me a lot since I am alone in this country and I didn’t find any one to talk about my problem.

    • blankMichelle says

      Hi there,

      I’m so sorry to hear about your daughter. My daughter is doing great now. We’re kind of in limbo land – waiting for the next xray to tell us how everything is developing. She had an open reduction and adductor tenotomy at 17 mos. At her last check in March, everything was looking good, but it has to stay that way, and that’s the trick with DDH. Have you joined the Facebook group and the Yahoo Group? There are lots of helpful parents in the spot we’re in. You can find the links for those groups on the Hip Dysplasia tab at the top of my blog. Good luck! Feel free to email me: [email protected].

  5. blankAmel says

    Thx for answering I am lost my doctor recommends open reduction and a femoral osteotomy to avoid more surgeries in the futur I don’t know what to do her A index is44 degree and the the dislocation is 6 mm superio and lateral of the left femoral head
    I will join the Facebook group because I need help all my family are overseas I am waiting for my sister to take care of my youngest child she’s 4 months old and she will have an ultra sound next week
    Thx again

  6. blankJessica says

    Our daughter was diagnosed with bilateral hd at birth. We’ve been through the Pavlick & Rino harnesses with no luck and now we are scheduled for a spica cast with surgery on both hips for the end of June – our love will be 4 months then. Needless to say that since the diagnosis I’ve been through every emotion – fear, sadness, nervousness and anger. I’ve scoured the internet for information and came across your blog…refreshing, honest and funny at times. Most importantly it gave me a sense that we could get through this! I’m still SO nervous about doing this at such a young age but our doctors assure us it’s better earlier than later – I hope they’re right. Thank you for posting your story – it gives me hope and a great reference guide. You are bookmarked!
    You mentioned your next appt was last September – any news since then? Our doctors too have said our love will probably need another surgery down the line…I hate that. One step at a time though.
    To a family in Iowa who has brought light to a family out in Colorado – thank you again.
    Here’s to healthy hips for our daughters and to all of those who are also going through this with their little ones – I pray for speedy recoveries and strong, healthy hips.

    • blankMichelle says

      Oh Jessica, my heart goes out to you. It is not a fun or an easy road. But you will get through it!! Lucky for you that your daughter is still so young. I’m sure she will recover with flying colors!! I hope you will join the facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/Hiptoddlers/). Great group!! Lots of helpful people.

      We did have an appointment in September. Things looked good then but the surgeon still cautions about more surgery. We go back in a few weeks. I’ve been on pins and needles for a long time already. Where in Colorado are you? We lived in C Springs for 3 years and moved here from there. Please feel free to email me directly – I’m happy to help however I can. [email protected]

      • blankJessica says

        Oh thanks for the response Michelle – this road feels so lonely so I’m happy to have contact with someone who is going through this or has gone through this. I’m just finding it hard to find a family who has gone through surgery and a casting with such a young baby. I’m scared to death and happily living in semi-denial until this all happens at the end of June 🙂 Not really though, I’m trying to prepare like mad actually. I just don’t want to give up my squishy little baby. And I just want to get her through it w/out feeling any pain or discomfort. Plus being so young, I don’t want it to affect her personality while she’s still developing it…I don’t know, I’m hoping the anticipation is worse than the process itself…
        We live out in Denver actually. We drive back home to Chicago about once a year and my favorite part about the drive is going through Iowa! I’ve always loved Iowa – I just think it feels so peaceful there. I have the same feeling living out here in Colorado though too 🙂
        Enjoy your week – it’s cold and snowy out here this week…wheres Spring!?

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