• English
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Portuguese
  • Spanish
  • Swedish
Back to Firefly Blog

Pramhead - Find the perfect Special Needs Buggy or not!

Pramhead - Find the perfect Special Needs Buggy or not!

If I’d been able to learn from that then maybe I wouldn’t have become such a drama queen about them myself!  To say I had a ‘thing’ for a set of baby wheels is really like saying Imelda Marcos liked shoes – you see I was ever so slightly addicted!  I gave up counting around the twenty mark...

Mama & Papas Sola

Mama & Papas Sola

For the first few, I reasoned with myself (and my husband!) that our daughter’s needs were not being met by the previous ones.  Lucy was diagnosed with hip dysplasia at 6 weeks old and put into a restrictive harness keeping her knees bent and hips flexed in what’s endearingly called a ‘frog like position’!  The reality is ‘normal’ clothes didn’t fit and nor did her new profile in the lovely pram I’d bought for her.

Out About Nipper 360

Out About Nipper 360

Then a year on and the hips still not in the correct position, we moved onto major surgery and the addition of a hip-spica cast, which kept the legs splayed out solid from chest to ankle – much more like a spatchcock chicken.  However I was now aware that part of the new pram purchases were also driven by my need to ‘compensate’ myself for having a baby with disabilities.  I went all out and bought the lovely Quinny Buzz I’d drooled over when pregnant but couldn’t justify in price.

Quinny Buzz

Quinny Buzz

And I got it in bubblegum pink, to coordinate with her purple cast, you see not just practical?!  The shape did allow for her unusual position, helped with a cushion, but like many of the brands at that time, the seat was always a bit reclined. By the time she was two years old and her low tone was more of an issue, the permanent recline became a constant frustration for her.

I embarked a long journey of pushchair discovery and at the peak of my little habit, I was literally spending all evening every evening trawling the internet and researching my fix.  The ‘buzz’ came in the hunt for the perfect set of wheels, with just the right seat positioning, fold mechanism, colour/pattern fabric and matching accessories.

The hit lasted shorter and shorter amounts of time with each purchase until the ‘down’ came with opening the box on delivery.  I was no longer even getting satisfaction from the deal as it became a reminder of what I was denying.

Luckily I had bought popular brands that held their value well and I always managed to sell them quickly (once within 48 hours of my getting it!) and even made money on some of them.  But eventually I reached a point where I had to admit that shop bought, mainstream whatever you want to call them, pushchairs really were not what my beautiful disabled daughter needed.

By the time she was four, she was also starting to outgrow the size and weight limit of ‘normal’ pushchairs and we started to get ‘those looks’ from other parents assuming that a child of her age should be able to walk.  Quite simply coming to terms with her disability, came at around the same time as coming to terms with her need for equipment designed with her special needs in mind.

Ottobock Kiwi

Ottobock Kiwi

It was a stepping out of one world and acknowledging ours and embracing it.  I still squirm now and again with the frustration that her special needs umbrella fold stroller doesn’t recline, which she needs for naps.  I also dream of designing the perfect compact special needs pushchair, because lord knows I’ve got enough experience of them now, but I’m relieved I’ve kicked the habit and can now see them for what they are, a mode of transport and piece of essential equipment, not a status symbol.

Firefly Blog

Real life stories, issues and experiences of day to day life by special needs parents and
healthcare professionals.

Sam Bowen

Meet Our Blogger

Hi I’m Sam, Mum to Lucy who is has complex special needs but is the happiest person I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting! I own Hip-Pose Ltd, a brand of clothing I designed for babies with hip dysplasia (which Lucy had). I’m also a fundraiser for her school PTA and in my spare time (if I get any!) I sew and make crafty stuff.

View Sam’s Profile

Become a Firefly Blogger

Would you like to write for Firefly? Join our blogger network of parents, therapists and professionals.

Get In Touch

Become a subscriber today

Join over 40,000 subscribers to our weekly newsletter with insightful articles just when you need them.

Join Mailing List

By using our site you agree to our use of cookies. Click here for more info.

Accept & Close

Please wait...