Parents are usually proud of their children when they take their first steps, but for Lovely Johnson, it made her daughter her hero.
Johnson’s 6-year-old daughter, Love, took her first steps ever a few days ago. Love has cerebral palsy, a group of disorders that affect a person’s ability to move and maintain balance and posture.
She shocked herself and her mother when she decided to try walking without her walker and braces.
“This moment felt like a dream come true,” Johnson told CNN on Monday. “I looked at her the way I looked at her when I gave birth to her. My heart was racing. I saw how excited my daughter was, and I knew a new chapter was about to begin.”
For the first three years of Love’s life, the family said her doctor thought she was just developing a little behind schedule. When she was 4 years old, however, they learned she had cerebral palsy. Then last year, she was given a wheelchair and a walker.
Before she was given a wheelchair to move about, her mom had to hold her or wheel her in a stroller.
“She decided to get up and try walking without her walker and braces,” Johnson, who lives in Austin, Texas, wrote on Facebook. “My hero is not someone older than me, it’s my 6-year-old princess.”
After holding onto furniture at first, Love was quickly able to take steps on her own. In a video that was posted Friday, Love smiled and laughed, and even gasped in disbelief as she reached the other side of the room.
“Mom, I can now walk like the other kids,” Love told her mom after the camera stopped filming.
She wanted to show everyone she knew that she could walk, but now she’s showed thousands of people.
“She asked me to record her. Because she felt and knew she could do it,” Johnson said. “She’s a very independent and intelligent girl and worked so hard for this moment.” They were so excited for such a rare and beautiful miracle. In the video, captured by the girl’s proud mother, Lovely Johnson, her expression is that of pure joy and amazement.
“Her lil brother was by her side every step of the way. BEAUTIFUL!!!!” wrote one Facebook user.
Cerebral palsy is a congenital disorder that affects a person’s movement, muscle tone, and posture. The symptoms can be lifelong, but in some rare cases, individuals can see marked improvement.
The video has received 1.7 million views and 38,000 shares since it was posted.