SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A bike ride is a family effort for 8-year-old Kenyon Hubbert. Mom and Dad get him strapped onto his special bike and his little sister even gives him a boost from behind.
Kenyon has cerebral palsy. He had surgery in December to correct his feet in hopes he wouldn’t need crutches one day. Once he was in recovery and ready for physical therapy, the pandemic shut everything down, including his physical therapy.
“It’s very hard. It’s just like my Mom and Dad are helping me like they’re a doctor,” said Kenyon. “I want to walk like other kids. I can’t just do it by myself. I need to learn.”
“If we let him plummet back down to what he was it could get worse, he could be in a wheelchair,” said his father, Stephon.
Kenyon isn’t alone. The pandemic has been challenging for patients and physical therapists. Ben Braxley, interim manager of the Mercy Outpatient Rehab Center, says while his offices are open, there are a lot of changes. Patients are kept physically distanced and even required to wear masks. Some use video conferences. While there are options, he worries some won’t use them and delay their care during the pandemic.
“Telehealth or one-time evaluation until things are a little safer. We don’t want people to delay their care and decrease their quality of life,” said Braxley.
“Some days there’s yelling, some days there’s crying some days there’s laughing it’s a roller coaster, emotional roller coaster,” said Lindsey Hubbert, Kenyon’s Mom.
Whether or not it’s a struggle, Kenyon keeps exercising with his parent’s help for now.
“You know those times when you go to work and you’re like ‘I really don’t want to go to work’ and I think about Kenyon and his struggles and being that he’s my son, that’s the ultimate fuel,” said Stephon.
While they wait for Kenyon to get back to his specialized physical therapist, his family is saving up money to get him a pool where he can walk in the water to build strength and self-confidence.