Tomorrow, I will take Elvie in for an appointment with her orthopedic surgeon, and we are hoping that she will be able to stop wearing the big, rigid brace she has been confined to for the past six weeks as she has been healing from surgery. It’s been an uncomfortable time for Elvie, and a time of increased work for me. It is much harder to care for a toddler in a brace than it is to keep up with my active girl when she is on the move. Everything from diaper changing to meal time has presented extra challenges, not to mention keeping her occupied and keeping her spirits up, and we will all be glad to have this time behind us. We are so grateful for all that has been done for Elvie in her surgeries, and we know that the brace is part of that, and we don’t take that lightly. Excellent medical care is a huge gift for our family. However, when the day to day grind gets frustrating, I find that what helps more than recognizing the big picture is thinking of the little, silly ways that having Elvie in a brace has benefited me personally. Here are my top five little reasons to smile about having the privilege of caring for a toddler in a body brace.