Her parents had to install a speed bump in the living room!
Living with disability and disease as a daily reality tests the mettle of a family. It’s well known that “necessity is the mother of invention,” and in moments of difficulty we can find unsuspected reserves of strength and ingenuity, but there’s no denying that the difficulties and fatigue of daily struggles don’t go away easily.
This story of hope, love, and ingenuity comes from Canada, and is a powerful testimony to how an ordinary family’s hope and resilience, when put to the test, can yield enthusiastic creativity. Instead of cursing their fate and lamenting their difficulties, they took the bull by the horns and found the way to go forward.
An unexpected diagnosis: Cancer
Brad and Kimberly Moore had taken their 4-month-old daughter Evelyn for a routine medical exam, but were told they needed to have some tests done. The resulting diagnosis caught them completely off guard. “It was stage 4 neuroblastoma, which were some pretty scary words. Now I can say them, but I couldn’t at first,” Kimberly told the Today Show. The tumor had attacked Evelyn’s spinal cord, one lung, and her heart. Eight rounds of chemotherapy were able to eliminate the tumor, but Evelyn ended up paralyzed below the arms.
At an age when other babies happily crawl and start to learn to walk, Evelyn had lost the use of her legs. The Moores left the hospital grateful that their daughter was alive—a true blessing—but they had spent eight months with her in the hospital, which had left Kimberly suffering from depression and anxiety.
Going back home was a mixture of joy and fear. They had to figure out how to deal with this new situation, which they had never imagined would occur. When they started to get back to daily life, they discovered the need to help Evelyn to move freely on her own, so she could explore and play like other kids her age. However, the Moores ran into an additional problem: nobody makes wheelchairs for children that young.