My daughter’s name is Hannah, she is 12 years old and in sixth grade. We adopted Hannah when she was 10 years oold. Hannah is a paraplegic as a result form a T1-T2 spinal injury that occurred from a car accident, where Hannah was ejected from the vehicle. Hannah has been a paraplegic from the age of 2. However, in her true fighter fashion she has overcome all obstacles pit in her path, with the help from some truly AMAZING people.
When Hannah came to us from the foster system she was pretty independent little girl in most aspects with the exception of her bowel and bladder. She was still being cathed by an adult. Teaching Hannah to cath herself was our first goal we set out to achieve. We also started going to the Neurological Recovery Center for physical therapy. Here is where Hannah has had the amazing opportunity to be trained by a team of professional Physical Therapist on the Lokomat.
I would say this place has changed Hannah’s life. I know maybe that seems dramatic but it truly has. Even though Hannah learned how to cath herself and not be confined to Mom to do so, it was still a struggle. While cathing does solve a very real problem for people like Hannah who don’t have the capacity of emptying their bladder on their own, there are down sides. Cathing can be very time consuming especially for a young girl just learning her way. It requires a young pre-teen to be more responsible than most pre-teens are even capable of. Always making sure she has enough supplies for the day, making sure she’s keeping up with her every four hour time frame even if it’s in the middle of class. While Hannah was cathing ther was NEVER a time when she would go to the Doctor and she didn’t’ have an infection, NEVER.
Then there was Dr. Daniel Finley. I won’t lie, I was a little skeptical at first. How could poking Hannah with needles get her bowel and bladder functioning again? Well it wasn’t quite that simple. We started seeing Daniel in May of 2016, three times a week for an hour long acupuncture session after school and all summer long. While we were seeing Daniel during the week for treatment we also had to cook herbs every other day for her to drink in the mornings and before bed at night. While they were not the yummiest drinks ever we still managed to get her to gulp them down night after night. Throughout this time we also maintained her activity levels and workouts. She started going to the restroom several times a day with some success but not consistently. We finished up, I believe the end of November with what I called the magic pills. I am not a Doctor like Daniel so I couldn’t tell how those pills are magical or what exactly they do inside the body, all I know is my Hannah has function back in her bowel and bladder! If she were to sit on the toilet for two hours before we met him she wouldn’t have been able to get a single drop out. Hannah no longer has to cath, she has not had any issues with bladder infections nor has there been any bacteria in her urine at all!! She has a strong sensation as to when she needs to go and her ability to hold it gets stronger and stronger by the week. She has regular bowel movements on her own.
It is hard to describe what Daniel has done for Hannah, and I don’t think she will fully grasp what he’s done for her till she is much older. He gave her back something she deserved to have from the beginning, which is control, confidence and hope. Hope for the future and what else she can accomplish that was told she couldn’t before. Daniel and everyone who is a part of the Neurological Recovery Center and not just her Therapist and Doctors, they became her real friends and family. I know if Hannah needed anything they would help us with whatever we needed. We have been blessed to have them apart of our lives and cannot wait to see what the future hold for them and Hannah.