Leggy issues for Aotea’s Rota family
Life isn’t all hopping, skipping and jumping for three members of the Rota family.
Mum Amanda, a teacher, has focal dystonia, a neurological muscle condition that has resulted in abnormal posture for her left ankle.
She has had it since badly twisting her ankle in 2012 and requires a leg brace to accommodate her shortened left calf and ankle.
A recent operation with top orthopedic surgeon Tim Gregg in September left plenty of scars as eight tendons were adjusted, but there is hope Rota may one day not have to use the at-times uncomfortable brace.
‘‘It [the surgery] was pretty successful and I was in a cast for 12 weeks, which wasn’t fun, but there’s a chance things might come right for me,’’ she said.
She hoped she could take part in Crossfit a bit more strenuously now.
What’s worrying for her, however, is her sons Levi, 9, and Lucas, 6, having leg issues of their own.
Lucas, who also has mild cerebal palsy, runs on his toes and his left foot ‘‘flicks in’’ on occasion. He is having constant physiotherapy to combat the problem.
Levi, meanwhile, has flat feet, and has problems with his calf, hamstrings and gluteal muscles.
‘‘They have to do things like sit on chairs at school assemblies, when all the other kids are crosslegged on the floor. ‘‘And while they’re active kids, they need to take it easy some-
‘‘It's hard for a mum to see your kids in pain but you do what you can.’’
times, know their own limits, or their legs just get bone tired and sore.
‘‘It’s hard for a mum to see your kids in pain but you do what you can.’’
She said the boys’ teachers at Adventure School have been ‘‘phenomenal’’ in making things easier for them.
Rota, whose husband is in the Air Force, said school and ‘‘normal kids’ stuff’’ is punctuated by seemingly endless doctors and phsyio appointments.
Lucas has an MRI soon and there will also likely be genetic testing to see if Amanda has passed something on to her boys.
She learned of some family history recently, going back a few generations, where ‘‘leg problems’’ are noted.
‘‘It’s not nice when you think you may have been the result of your childrens’ issues, but you just have to face it head on.’’
Amanda Rota, with her boys Lucas, 6, left and Levi 9, who all have leg problems of one or another.