She noticed her backpack was so full, it was almost bursting at the seams. As a mom, she couldn’t help but worry. As she unzipped the backpack in order to take a peek inside, she couldn’t believe her daughter was capable of such a thing.
Kids love to sneak in toys and treats to school, so she wouldn’t have been surprised if she’d taken something that didn’t belong in school. After all, she was just a little girl. Kids are mischievous little creatures and they don’t always realize that by carrying so much weight in their backpacks, they’re really putting too much pressure on their backs. But when she unzipped her backpack hoping to remove whatever she had hidden inside, she had to do a double take.
The lovely couple was exhausted but happy to finally meet their baby. She’d been through labor and was tired, but when the young mother and father finally saw their baby girl, they realized something was off. Her legs looked nothing like they were supposed to. They couldn’t help but stare at the doctors, almost begging to know what was wrong. But instead of finding comfort, they saw nothing but concern on the doctor’s faces. Sadly, they realized that their poor little girl had a tough road ahead.
There’s nothing scarier than seeing your own child suffer. She had come into this world just a few days ago, and yet, she was already scheduled to undergo a series of intricate surgeries. Their baby needed surgery to correct her legs, but thankfully, their baby wasn’t in any pain. Right away she started to dig in and try to find some answers. She needed to know what was happening to her child.
Sometimes, we don’t know what to tell a parent whose child is facing surgery or a tough medical journey, particularly at such a young age. There was nothing anyone could’ve said to this mom that would’ve made her feel better. But she knew she needed to stay strong for her baby girl. She was not about to let her go on this journey all by herself, and thanks to both their strength, it ended up paying off.
They’d been to the doctor’s office more times than they can count, but it all paid off when they finally learned what they were dealing with. Their beautiful baby girl had a genetic disorder called Larsen syndrome, which affects only 1 in 1,000 people. For some kids, this condition might result in a hammer toe, but more often than not, there were other visible deformities that would greatly affect their mobility and growth. They were devastated. They could’ve never imagined their little girl would be facing such a tough disease.
When she heard the doctor utter those words she couldn’t help but feel hopeless. For a few moments, she watched all her plans flash before her eyes. Would her precious little angel be able to play outside with other children? Would she ever get to ride a bicycle? The prognosis was grim. This generic disorder primarily affects the development of bones, but that’s not the only abnormality kids with Larsen syndrome have to deal with. There’s a myriad of other symptoms that are pretty common that made her wonder what the future held for her daughter.
Despite the many troubles ahead, the parents were overjoyed with happiness. They immediately fell in love with their baby daughter, whom they decided to name Addie. She brought joy into their lives, but they were really taken back the day they learned about the troubles ahead. Addie would have a difficult time trying to walk, as her legs were bent and not straight enough for her to move freely. The doctors even feared little Addie would never be able to walk, but her parents weren’t ready to throw in the towel. They were just getting started. But what were they supposed to do first?
Addie underwent four surgeries on her tiny legs, and she was recovering like a pro. Finally, it was time to head home and leave the hospital. At Texas Scottish Rite Hospital, the doctors and nurses tried to make both the kids and the parents feel right at home. But Addie’s parents couldn’t wait to go back home to some type of normalcy.
Much to her parents relief, Addie was healthy and completely functional. She could move around just like any other kid, and even though her legs still looked slightly bent, little Addie didn’t really seemed bothered by it. Those legs allowed her move around as much as she pleased. But they still had a long road ahead of them, but they wouldn’t find out until much later in life.
Everything they’d done so far to ensure Addie would have a normal life seemed to work. The many surgeries and countless hours of individual therapy helped her manage her condition, and now, she was enjoying every minute of her freedom. Larsen Syndrome is no walk in the park, which is ironic, as all these parents wanted to do was enjoy a nice stroll at a park, take her to swimming lessons, or rollerskating. She seemed to be headed in the right direction, but no one could imagine what life had in store for this family.
When Addie turned seven years old, she had already undergone a whopping 65 surgeries meant to correct the posture of her legs. But she was a strong little girl who was wise beyond her years, and she knew that eventually, all of this would pay off. All she wanted was a normal life where she could walk and run like the other kids. But this family wasn’t done jumping through a few hurdles. They just didn’t know it yet.
Addie had spent almost her entire life at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital, whether she was being treated for her condition, getting surgery, or physical therapy sessions. So whenever she was able to be out and about, she’d make the most of it by running all over the place, going to school and playing with her friends. But no one could’ve suspected that this sweet little kid was hiding a major secret.
To say that kids are mysterious little creatures is an understatement. Their parents had spent every waking moment by Addie’s side, and yet, they had no idea she’d been doing this behind their backs! She’d been hiding a major secret from her own parents, and they were absolutely clueless about it. Addie’s mom couldn’t help but wonder just she managed to pull this off! And worst of all, how did it slipped right by her?
Addie’s parents were used to her spending most of her time at the hospital, or playing around with her school friends, like any normal child. But Addie wasn’t out and about and enjoying a nice summer day with her friends. In fact, she was far from playing. Addie’s mom never suspected anything until one day, she noticed her baby girl’s backpack kept getting bigger and bigger, almost as if she’d been hiding something inside. One day, she felt the urge to look around but she didn’t think much of it…until she opened Addie’s backpack.
Once Addie kicked in and was completely asleep one night, her mother went inside her room and fetched her backpack. She wanted to figure out why the seams were almost broken from all the extra weight she’d been carrying. But the second she unzipped it, she felt as if a million bricks hit her in an instant. Piles upon piles of cash had started to spill out of Addie’s backpack. How could a seven-year old child come into possession of such a large sum of cash? She needed answers, fast!
Never in a million years would they expect to stumble upon waddles of cash stashed inside a little kid’s backpack. Addie’s mom even assumed her smart little daughter was just carrying one too many books inside her backpack. They couldn’t help but wonder if perhaps, someone had coerced her into doing something illegal. They just couldn’t figure out how she’d managed to get so much money!
Any mother would’ve had a heart attack at the sight of so many piles of cash, but she decided to stay cool, calm, and collected and ask Addie about it in the morning. That night, she couldn’t help but play different scenarios that would explain why Addie was hiding so much money in her backpack. But the true motives behind her act would leave her speechless.
Addie’s mom woke up nervous and pretty anxious. She knew she needed to confront her daughter and get to the bottom of this. She was afraid of what she’d learn that day but she knew it was imperative that they sit down and have a talk. But the moment Addie started telling her story, she couldn’t help but cry. She had never been this proud of her amazing little girl.
Addie started explaining how she ended up stacking so much money in her backpack. She couldn’t help but stare in disbelief. . “I just hold a sign that says, ‘For my birthday wish, “I want to raise $8,000 for Texas Scottish Rite Hospital.’” Her sweet little girl had come up with this campaign all on her own, and even though she’d been through hell and back, she wanted nothing more but to help others on her birthday. To say that it was a true proud parenting moment is an understatement.
Their little girl had gone through so much already, and yet, she still had it in her to give back and appreciate everything the Texas Scottish Rite Hospital did for her. Addie’s mom assumed she was simply too young to comprehend the gravity of her situation, but she couldn’t be more wrong. Addie was wise beyond her years. Somehow, she had blossomed into an empathetic and compassionate little girl.
Addie’s proud momma immediately joined in her daughter’s cause, and stood along with her baby girl at the intersection of a busy neighborhood in Houston Texas. It wasn’t long ago that doctor’s had warned her that little Addie might never be able to walk, but here she was. Standing on a hot Texas day, holding a sign, trying to give back to the one place who had helped her so much.
The little girl’s selfless act hit a nerve, clearly, because soon enough, neighbors, passersby and anyone who made their way through that intersection started pitching in. The media was completely infatuated with Addie’s generosity, and soon enough, people started sharing her story online. Her initial goal was to reach $8,000, but she was about to find out that she’d not only reach that figure, but exceed it far beyond belief.
Everyone was so impressed with the little girl with the heart of gold. And many of them couldn’t help but praise the parents for raising such a compassionate human being. Perhaps, Addie witnessed her own mom and dad performing selfless acts and she grew up surrounded by respect and empathy. But her early struggles in life is what empowered her to rise above the trials of life. But what was little Addie planning on doing with so much cash?
Addie was starting to show some impressive traits despite her young age. In virtually no time, she had managed to raise an impressive $20,000, so it’s safe to say, this kid is going places! Now that’s going to make for quite an interesting childhood story! But soon enough, Addie was about to find out just how successful her little campaign had been. A few days later, she received an anonymous letter and a check for $50,000 that would be put towards helping kids who struggle with health issues such as little Addie. But what prompted this little child to take on such a burden and try to help the hospital?
Addie was no stranger to hardships in life, despite being so young. Her parents were heartbroken in the beginning. All they wanted to do was focus on figuring out a plan for Addie. They wanted to guarantee she’d have the best life possible. But they weren’t financially prepared to tackle the expenses that come with having a sick child. They were fortunate enough to rely on the generosity of the Texas Scottish Rite Hospital, which ran on donations. It was thanks to this hospital that Addie was able to lead a healthy life today.
Surgeries, treatments, and rehab are expensive pretty much all over the world. Medical costs are so excessive, they can leave families on the brink of bankruptcy. When you’re dealing with a sick child, the last thing on your mind should be losing your home or being strapped for cash, but we all know that isn’t always the case. Thankfully, Addie and her family got the care they needed without having to go in debt trying to help their child get the best possible treatment.
The media often has the power to reach thousands upon thousands of citizens, and sometimes, they use those powers to spread a beautiful message such as Addie’s. Still, the response of the public left everyone in shock. Her generosity seemed to have touched the hearts of many. Clearly, this is one little girl who’d rather focus on the glass half full, as she eloquently said, “I want to give the money to the hospital for new prosthetics for other children like me.”
Addie’s parents are obviously doing a fantastic job raising a selfless and kind tiny human, who’d rather spend her birthday gifts on those in need. Her innocent outlook on life is a true inspiration to us all, really. People often ask themselves how we can possibly change the world, and the answer isn’t too complicated, really. All you have to do is take a few pointers from Addie’s selfless act.