Apr 27, 2022, 9:22:30 AM CDT
Zoey was 18 months old when she was rushed to Children’s Health after a near-drowning accident.
On a feeding tube and barely moving, doctors told her mother, Rebekah, that she’d likely be in a semi-vegetative state for the rest of her life.
But as Rebekah leaned over the crib to tell her baby that she loved her, Zoey smiled. And that smile filled Rebekah with hope.
“From then on, I knew she was going to be OK,” Rebekah said.
Now 12 years old, Zoey loves to talk about the novel she is writing and illustrating. She laughs as she spins donuts in her wheelchair. And she’s proud of how far she’s come since her accident, including eating on her own and bearing about half of her body weight when she stands.
She and her mother credit much of her success to the nurses and rehabilitation therapists at Children’s Health.
Through several intensive, weeks-long therapy sessions, Zoey's clinical team coached Rebekah on how to care for Zoey. Therapists worked with Zoey to strengthen her leg muscles so she could bear some of her body weight, after surgery to correct her inward-turning legs and knees left the muscles weakened. Her care team decorated her hospital room to make it feel more like home. And sometimes a curly-haired therapy dog visited Zoey for cuddles.
More importantly, the team gave Zoey and Rebekah hope for a future.
“I don’t know of another hospital that does intensive therapy like they do. We wouldn’t be as far as we are now without them,” Rebekah said.