Eden started walking at 9 months. Her first birthday pictures are filled with fat-lip smiles from a tumble the day before. She potty trained herself at 18 months. She had a hematoma in her ear from a fall when she was around 2. An adrenaline junkie at the park, around 3 years old, she begged for me to push her super high on the swings. She lost her grip and did a complete flip off the swing, landing in my arms as I stood (thankfully) underneath her. She learned how to ride a bike with no training wheels on the first ride. She did a flip on the bars a couple weeks into kindergarten and fell flat on her back, got up and went into class when the bell rang.
That’s why, on December 23, 2015, when she did a bridge (a backbend where you push yourself up from the floor) on our living room floor and then collapsed crying, I shook it off. When she cried that her legs, back and hips hurt, I gathered her in my arms and rocked her, shushing her, telling her to calm down.
But this time, Eden didn’t pick herself up off the ground, dust herself off and go on her next crazy adventure. Thirty minutes after she started crying, she stopped. Her face changed—it kind of filled with wonder—and she told me, “Mom, I feel like my feet are sleeping.” I looked at her body, which seemed to be posed awkwardly on the bed, and told her to move her leg. She stared at it, saying, “I can’t, Mom.”
I put her and her sister in the car and rushed to the hospital, a day that started her 52-day stay in the
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