<img style="float: right;" src="https:\/\/opedge.com\/Content\/OldArticles\/images\/2006-05_04\/Tina-7308.jpg" hspace="4" vspace="4" \/>\r\n\r\nI often wonder how different life might have been for my family. In 1968 my parents and my older brother awaited the April birth of their second child.\r\n\r\nTragically, a 2\u00bd-lb. boy was born in late February, seven weeks too soon. His lungs were not ready and due to oxygen deprivation at birth, he suffered severe brain damage. Dominic lived only two days in an incubator.\r\n\r\nThree healthy children followed in later years. I was next, then my sister and later another brother.\r\n\r\nThe whole family went each year to Dominic's grave. From the\r\ntime I could stand, I remember my older brother--a young child\r\nhimself--helping my Dad plant flowers at a small headstone engraved\r\nwith an angel. I could particularly sense the loss felt by my older\r\nbrother, a feeling that I then did not quite understand. A feeling\r\nof "what might have been." Today his own son is named Dominic.\r\n\r\nAs a child, I knew to feel sad for the brother I would never\r\nknow, but also in those moments I had my first assurances that\r\nthere was another place and another being taking care of things,\r\nand that it was good.\r\n\r\nMy parents were told that had Dominic lived, he would have been\r\na child with special needs. In the late 1960s, family support\r\nsystems and educational programs for special-needs children were\r\nfew. Modern medicine has not yet been able to prevent some children\r\nfrom entering this world with special needs, but fortunately\r\nsociety has caught up.\r\n\r\nMy family did not move to Broomfield, Colorado, from Denver\r\nuntil the early 1970s. Had Dominic lived, maybe we would have moved\r\nsooner. At the time there was a small school in the city started by\r\na group of families with children with special needs, a unique\r\nearly education center in the entire state, one that integrated\r\ntypical children with special-needs children in the same\r\nclassrooms, called Bal Swan Children's Center.\r\n\r\nMy husband and I have been blessed with two wonderful, beautiful\r\ndaughters. They are both typical children. I am thankful each day\r\nfor their health. Both of my girls attended Bal Swan as\r\npresechoolers, and I became a volunteer there because (selfishly) I\r\nliked the way our involvement enriched our lives. I like to think\r\nthat part of the reason I felt drawn to the program is because of\r\nmy baby brother.\r\n\r\nIt is not lost on me that the school would have been an\r\ninvaluable resource for our family. I think about it often, even as\r\nI continue to volunteer, now that my children have moved on to\r\nelementary school.\r\n\r\nDominic ended up in another place, that, at the time, might have\r\nbeen better for him.\r\n\r\nThankfully, today there are many similar educational and support\r\nprograms and countless medical solutions to improve the lives of\r\nthose children who enter the world with special circumstances.\r\n\r\nComplex solutions for complicated problems. Children present\r\nunique treatment challenges and yield exceptional rewards. Thank\r\ngoodness for today's pediatric remedies. We hope you enjoy our\r\npediatric coverage this month.\r\n\r\n<img style="float: right;" src="https:\/\/opedge.com\/Content\/OldArticles\/images\/2006-05_04\/view2.jpg" hspace="4" vspace="4" \/>\r\n\r\n<b>Editor's Note:<\/b> Orthopaedically challenged\r\nchildren present special treatment situations due to size and\r\ngrowth issues among other factors. The physicians, nurses,\r\northotists, prosthetists, therapists, and other rehabilitative\r\nprofessionals who specialize in treating children with limb\r\ndeficiencies are meeting this month in Sacramento, California, for\r\nthe Association of Children's Prosthetic-Orthotic Clinics (ACPOC)\r\nAnnual Meeting. In this special section of <i>The O&P\r\nEDGE<\/i> focusing on O&P work in pediatrics, Sherry Metzger\r\nwrites about how a <a href="https:\/\/opedge.com\/2937">multidisciplinary approach to spina bifida<\/a> can\r\nimprove the patient's quality of life; Judith Philipps Otto\r\nexplores how <a href="https:\/\/opedge.com\/2938">expandable internal prostheses<\/a> are being used\r\nas an alternative to amputation for children suffering from\r\nosteosarcoma; and Miki Fairley looks into a <a href="https:\/\/opedge.com\/2939">study examining the effectiveness of cranial\r\nremolding helmets<\/a> in treating positional plagiocephaly.