New feet the start of a new beginning for Finn
LITTLE Finn Smith is about to get new feet, but first he has to go back to Royal Brisbane Hospital for more surgery.
The toddler the Sunshine Coast adopted as its own after his life-and-death battle with meningococcal is booked in for surgery on his left hand next Wednesday.
Surgeons hope to ease the scarring that has formed as a result of the amputations.
Finn had his right hand amputated at the wrist in December. Parts of the digits on his left hand, including his thumb, were saved.
He lost his left leg below the knee and his right foot.
Finn's mum, Sarah, said changes to funding for prosthetics for children, introduced by the State Government earlier this year, had allowed Finn to replace his "stumps" and get new feet.
Finn received the stumps in February and has been adjusting to them well.
But the feet, being prepared by Sunshine Orthopaedic Services, will allow him to run, jump and even wear sandals.
"It will give him a whole new life," Mrs Smith said.
At his Pacific Paradise home this week the 21-month-old toddler seemed oblivious to his disabilities.
He scurried around on all fours, causing the family dog Easter to go in to a spin, and he was eager to grab the Daily's camera and even pen and notepad to draw a "flower".
While Mrs Smith knows the surgery next week is for the best, she is not looking forward to returning to hospital.
A skin graft will be taken from his groin to provide more skin for his right hand.
"This will ease up the little bits of fingers he has and give him more use," Mrs Smith said.
She hopes Finn's new feet will give him something new and positive to focus on.
Senior orthotist Dewet Heyns said Finn's new feet would make a big difference.
They have the appearance of a normal foot, and he will be able to use them to lift himself up, walk and run.
Finn has been selected as an ambassador for the Royal Children's Hospital and Mrs Smith will make a speech for the first telethon in October, near the time of Finn's second birthday on October 21.
The family has always been humbled by the generosity of the Sunshine Coast community.
Mrs Smith had to quit her full-time job at a pathology lab to look after Finn.