Although a young girl has lost the use of her legs after a simple gymnastics maneuver, she has not lost her spirit.
On December 23, 2015, 5-year-old Eden Hoelscher did a backbend in her living room while her family was getting ready to go Christmas shopping. Immediately after, she fell on the floor, crying. Unfortunately, her injury only got worse.
"I said, 'Just lay lay down and take a nap, maybe you'll feel better,'" recalled Kylee Hoelscher, Eden’s mother, as reported by WLS-TV News. "She kind of looked at me and said, 'Mommy, it feels like my legs are asleep,' but her legs were in this strange position, so I said, 'Eden, move your legs. She said, 'I can't.’ Then, I stood her up and her legs buckled under her and we went to the emergency room."
At Torrance Memorial Medical Center in Torrance, California, an MRI showed that Eden was paralyzed from the waist down. According to Go Fund Me, the 5-year-old stayed in the hospital for 52 days and needs consistent medical attention. She cannot regulate her body temperature and her bowel and bladder no longer function.
"The damage, it's her entire spine and it doesn't make any sense at all,” Kylee said. “It's just a backbend and it's just devastating. You go from watching your 100 percent independent kid who dressed herself, put her hair in a ponytail...to not being able to get out of bed and it's almost impossible to bear."
Eden has reportedly always had an energetic, adventurous spirit, which has remained the same in spite of her medical problems. Given the nickname “Daredevil Eden” by her physical therapist, her medical team believes that if anyone can recuperate from such a terrible injury, Eden can.
"It's amazing that her spirit has completely gone unchanged,” Kylee remarked. “The doctor said that's one of the things she has going for her. In physical therapy, she won't cry or get mad, she'll just try as hard as she can."
In April 2016, Eden will go to Kennedy Krieger in Baltimore for two weeks of intensive physical therapy, followed by three months of locomotor training at Frazier Rehab in Louisville, Kentucky. More than $18,000 has been raised toward her intensive therapy sessions, medical bills, and other related expenses.
“These therapies will also provide what we all need most of all: hope," said Kylee.