cory in field with texas flag

Apr 16, 2019 / Spotlight

Share Your Story: Let My Light Shine

Meet Cory, a patient who is treated by our Prosthetics experts. Learn more about his journey below.

Blog written by Cory and his mom, Christy, of Ft. Worth. 

As far back as I can remember, I thought my younger sister’s legs could also come off. I would tug on her legs, so I could show her how to put them back on… but hers never came off. They were stuck.

When I was little, I didn’t notice anything different about myself.  My family never treated me like I was different, so it wasn’t until I started school and kids would call me robot legs, that it dawned on me. I didn’t know if this was cool or not, because to me being a robot is way cooler than being an average kid! I then realized that I was different from the other children in my class.

At the beginning of each new school year, kids would either stare or ask questions, but I noticed that after I would let them touch my “robot legs” they weren’t scared of my difference. Finally, when I was in the second grade, I was given the chance to tell the entire school about my difference - I felt proud to share my story.   

I have been a patient at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children since before I could even talk. Everything at the hospital is so kid friendly – I look forward to going to the hospital because I love the gaming system in the Prosthetic department. The park is amazing! They have popcorn, aquariums, books, more games - it’s like a giant play palace. They even have wagons for when my mom has a lot to carry. I try to help her out when I can – teamwork!

Don Cummings makes my prosthetics and the coolest thing about Don is that he is just like me! He also has prosthetics and is able to give me advice on what may help and always make sure I’m comfortable and mobile. I told him I like to take my legs off when I am home. He even made me stubbies, so I can run and move freely, without scaring my knees.

Everyone at the hospital cares so much about the patients and because of this, has given me the tools necessary to shine my light freely.

Today, I am 9 years old and want to share my story because I want people to know that although I’m different, I’m still normal. I refuse to blend in when I believe that we were born to stand out. I want to promote and celebrate individuality.

Everybody is different in their own way, but we also all have one thing in common – we are all human.

I’ve embraced my difference from day one and want everyone else to do the same.

We all have a sparkle in us and sometimes the spark from one person can rejuvenate someone else’s light. I love to let my light shine and share my journey with others.

I want people to know - you can let life create your barriers or you can create your own life. 

The choice is yours, no matter what obstacles you may face. I am still able to play soccer, baseball, wheel chair basketball, regular basketball, wrestle, karate - I’ve tried it all. My favorite is wrestling and swimming because I don’t have anything to slow me down from going full speed.

I’m Cory’s mom and I’m here with a little background information. During my pregnancy, neither the obstetrician nor I knew there were any abnormalities. They could not ever see his feet during any of my ultrasounds but said that it was normal for a baby to sit like a frog – and the worst-case scenario he might have clubfeet and need to be in a brace. After he was born, he underwent several X-rays, doctors’ appointments, genetic testing and was eventually diagnosed with the condition called tibial hemimelia - his tibia bones in his lower legs were very small or absent.
We were referred to Scottish Rite Hospital when Cory was about 10 months old. At first, the thought of amputation made me scared for him. The specialists there comforted me and helped me realize that this was the best and least painful option for Cory. This was one of the hardest decisions that I have ever made. My feelings were numb, I didn’t know what to feel, what to think – it was almost as if I was having an out of body experience and floating through the motions.
All of the staff at the hospital were incredibly informative and even helped set up meetings for me with other parents and children that have had similar experiences. Cory was 18 months old he had his amputation surgeries. It was such a smooth process, and everyone was extremely supportive. The cheerful staff and overall positive energy were the only things able to get me out of my ‘zombie mode’ – I just love that hospital. He woke right up after surgery and was just as jovial as before.

The surgery didn’t slow him down one bit – I had the hardest time keeping the bandages on him because he was such an active little boy. At 24-months he received his first set of prosthetics. At that time, I could see the light come back on inside him and in turn, inside me as well. He has always been the happiest kid ever and has always wanted to show his legs to the world. While I was scared for him and wanting to protect him from the world, he became my super hero and embraced his individuality.

Not only did Scottish Rite save Cory, it also saved me.



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