Monday, November 19, 2007

My niece, my inspiration

My niece, Marie, was born with cerebral palsy. She was born 3 months premature and came into this world determined. When she was diagnosed, the doctor said - "See how she doesn't move one leg and then the other." Well, within the week she was moving one leg and then the other. Then it was that she couldn't go from kneeling to up on her knees and once again she was kneeling no problem within the week. It was like she just needed to hear what she couldn't do and she was determined to prove them wrong. After being told she would never be able to get around on her own she now, using a walker and with braces on, gets around with no problem.

Marie is 5 years old and after having some doctors say she'll never walk on her own without a walker, we as her family know Marie better than that. She is now in an intensive physical therapy to learn to walk on her own and it is amazing. I went to watch her and she is determined to walk. She works with the therapist for 3 hours at a time. She does squats and leg lifts and wears a suit that provides just enough support so she can walk around in it and then they release the support a little at a time until she'll be walking on her own. At the end of a physical therapy session her little legs are shaking and she is exhausted. We have already seen her progress in such a short period of time. It is amazing how the human body responds and adapts to the demands placed on it- just goes to show anything is possible!
Nothing will stop my niece as she grows up and overcomes the obstacles she has been faced with at such a young age. She is always asking me to go exercise and I take her up to our home gym where she has a circuit of exercises she goes through and she loves it! So next time you think about skipping a workout or you just don't feel like training, think about my 5 year old niece who works out 3 hours at a time until her legs shake to one day be able to walk, something most of us take for granted. Get out and move!

She inspires me everyday!