Bravery seems to be a recurring subject in my blog in the last few weeks. Now, a little girl is being hailed as being brave, alongside the heroes I have talked about in mountain rescue teams and lifeboat crews.
The little girl in question, no more than a toddler, is the subject of a You Tube video posted by the Amputee Coalition of America. It shows her taking her very first steps with her new prosthetic leg.
She is clearly delighted, stopping to blow raspberries, before walking onwards. She falls over but picks herself up and walks on to her dad who is waiting with his hands outstretched. When she reaches him, he picks her up for a cuddle.
The video shows an inspiring moment in the little girl’s life. It is a moment that shows the child’s determination to not let her amputation control her life. And it is a determination that is shared by many people with disabilities but it is also a great example to those who think that their problem means that they cannot do anything; to those that seem to believe that the world owes them a living.
For reasons of privacy, the name and information about the little girl have not been shared online, nor has the reason why her leg has ben amputated, but the heartwarming video has captured the attention of many on both You Tube and Facebook. One Facebook user wrote: “Puts into perspective all the stupid things we complain about when we see the bravery of this little one.” Another added: “This cute angel will do amazing things one day! She is a fighter!”
Those comments both hit the nail right on the head. The video certainly does put other issues into perspective and she may well go on to bigger and better things. This is one girl who is not going to let her amputation get in the way of her life. She is already accepting her prosthetic leg as completely normal for her.
But, is she being brave? Well, her spirit is obviously enviable. In the video, she falls down but gets up easily and carries on. That is what life is all about – other children do that too.
Owing to living with multiple sclerosis, I have serious mobility and balance problems. In fact, when I am not using a wheelchair, falling is an all-too-frequent event. The floor is one of my closest friends!
The trick, however, is to get up and get on with life.
This little one is coping with her disability in the only way she knows. It is not a position of her choosing and as such, while I admire her fortitude, she should not be burdened with being described as ‘brave’ or labelled a ’hero’. They are such high aspirations to have to attain and then maintain. Similarly, I am not being brave in coping with my disability; she and I are both just doing what we can to overcome our difficulties.
Long may she be happy and able to grow up without being negatively affected by artificial leg.