Published: Aug 24, 2018
Maddy describes herself as “the happiest girl in the world,” and it’s clear that she is. Singing Bruno Mars, laughing, and dancing in her wheelchair, Maddy’s warm demeanor and curious nature is contagious. Maddy and her grandmother Nancy stay at the Ronald McDonald House of Delaware during the week while she undergoes therapy for complications due to Turner syndrome, a condition that affects only females when one of the X chromosomes is missing. Turner syndrome can cause a variety of medical and developmental problems, including short height and heart defects.
Nancy, her husband, and Maddy live together in Abington Pennsylvania, about an hour away from Wilmington. Maddy has had several life-threatening complications, and was referred to occupational, physical, and massage therapy at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children after a surgery of eight incisions to correct her leg and hip growth. The surgery has temporarily bound Maddy to a wheelchair, but that doesn’t stop her from having fun. “She’s always dancing…always,” Maddy’s Nan explained while Maddy bounced in her chair, “She is joyful no matter what.”
Nancy and Maddy agree that their favorite thing about the House is the people! Maddy recently became best friends with another bubbly resident, Abbey. Nancy’s face glowed when she talked about their sweet friendship. Nancy also mentioned her own sincere and supportive relationships that she has found at the House, “The volunteers work so hard to make things special. The dinner we had last night was luau themed. Maddy had so much fun, and that wouldn’t be possible without volunteers.” Maddy agreed with a laugh and a smile. Maddy collects bracelets from her favorite room, The Treasure Chest, and glamorously wears them all the way up to her elbows. As a true free spirit and spunky girl, Maddy has become a celebrity at the house…everyone knows her and feels happier because of it.
When school starts again in the fall, Maddy will return to Roslyn Elementary School, where she has a supportive staff encouraging her to grow and learn. Nancy hopes that Maddy will be able to walk again soon, and keep in touch with her new friend Abbey. “I’m so grateful to be here. I know it’s always busy here but the staff always go out of their way to help. Maddy and I feel like this is our home away from home. I don’t know what I’d do without their help.”
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