Dreams and Dolphins

I have Proximal Focal Femoral Deficiency (PFFD), which made one leg grow slower. My left leg was nine inches (23 cm) shorter than my right.

Doctors thought they might have to amputate my leg, but we found a doctor in Florida who could lengthen it. The “fixator” he attached made my bone grow a millimeter every day. Over the summer, my leg grew five inches (13 cm)! I got a blessing before one of my surgeries, and I know it helped.

Winter the Dolphin

In Florida I met a dolphin named Winter. Her tail got caught in a crab trap, but she was able to swim again with a prosthetic tail. A volunteer taught me how to make Winter dance and do other tricks. Winter never gave up, so I didn’t want to give up either.

What Gives Me Courage

I think about how Joseph Smith went through having leg surgery when he was awake and how brave he was. I keep a sticker on my wall that says, “If Winter can, I can,” and I have a stuffed dolphin that I take with me to all of my surgeries. It’s missing the tail, just like Winter! It helps me have hope.

How I Help Others

A lady who used to be my Primary teacher is paralyzed, so I wrote nice things on hearts to put on her door and gave her a treat. I also wrote a poem about my dream of walking again. Because I’ve been through a lot, I try to help others who are going through hard things.

I’ve had a dream, a very real dream,

One that’s lasted my whole life through.

I dream about running, skipping, and dancing

And tumbling like cheerleaders do. …

It was a hard and overwhelming year for me,

But I feel so very blessed that my dreams came true.

I am grateful for miracles and answers to prayers.

I now have no doubt that dreams can come true.

What I Do For Fun

I play piano, swim, rock climb, and ski. I also like to paint, make bracelets, and sew and cook.

How My Friends Helped Me

When I was in a wheelchair, my friends would wait for my mom to drop me off at school so they could help push me and carry my books. Sometimes they would come do crafts with me when I was recovering.

How You Can Help

  • If someone is on crutches, see if they need help carrying things.

  • Visit a friend when they’ve been sick. Bring a craft or game to do with them.

  • Cheer up people when they’re having a hard time.