Alan is five years old and wants to be a footballer. He already knows that he is brave, even though he is so small. His legs are twisted due to a genetic defect. They were already in plaster after birth. Now they hurt in orthopedic shoes. Alan is cared for by his grandparents, who are now collecting money for the operation, which cannot be performed in Poland.
Alan had plasters on his legs already on the second day of his life. When he was half a year old, he became a slave to corrective shoes and remains so – with breaks – to this day. – His feet were twisted quite badly and after some time he was diagnosed with toenail-patella syndrome. This is a genetic, congenital defect – explains Agnieszka Sobek, Alan’s grandmother.
Not long after Grandma documented Alan’s first steps without a cast, another blow hit the family. The father never participated in the boy’s life, and eventually the mother also gave up. The grandparents successfully won foster care in court because they see how much you can do for the boy if you want. – A very cheerful child, he is also very helpful, very ambitious. He tries to be first. Even if it doesn’t work out, he will cry and still want it. This gives us incredible strength – explains Mariusz Słuszniak, Alan’s grandfather.
A lot of support
The joy of Alan’s improved health did not last long. The boy was about to undergo tendon transplants at a clinic in Warsaw when, during a consultation in Vienna, after an MRI examination, it turned out that repairing the feet would not help unless the boy’s knees were repaired first.
The nail-patella syndrome has begun to take its toll – it leads to gradual deformation of the kneecap, thighs, pelvis, elbows and ankles. In this case it attacked the knees. – The left knee is in worse condition than the right one and requires this surgery, because the patella is completely outside the knee. This kneecap needs to be transplanted to the right place and many other things need to be repaired in this knee – explains the boy’s grandmother.
The doctor who treated the boy in Poland admitted in a telephone conversation that we lack specialists who could comprehensively treat the effects of clubfoot.
The boy’s grandmother and grandfather are trying to raise PLN 80,000 for the operation in Vienna, scheduled for January. Alan’s kindergarten helps. – If we look closely, we notice his disability, but he is truly worth every sacrifice. He is very emotionally mature for his age. He’s already been through a lot in his life, says Marta Mroczek, a teacher at kindergarten no. 11 in Elbląg.
Main photo source: Fakty TVN