When Natalie Rose Shearer was hit by a minivan in June doctors weren’t sure she would make the night, much less return home to her family in just six months.
The two-year-old was hit by a minivan on Cymbeline Drive on June 21 while walking behind the stroller with her mother, Jennifer, and sister Grace.
She darted out onto the road, was hit by the van and suffered life-threatening head, chest and internal injuries. Jennifer described the incident as a mother’s worst nightmare.
“There was severe brain damage,” Jennifer said. “We weren’t sure she was going to survive.”
Nov. 3 was a day of celebrations at the Westcliffe community building on Seyton Drive where family and friends gathered to welcome the little girl. There was a bouncy castle, music, crafts and food.
“She has been home since Thanksgiving, but I wanted a chance to hold a celebration and thank all the people that have lent us support over the last few months,” Jennifer said.
Despite the celebrations, the toddler has a long road to recovery.
Aside from regaining her motor functions and re-learning how to walk, talk and feed herself, the toddler had to have eye surgery. Doctors are worried she might have amblyopia, more commonly known as lazy eye. The condition can be helped with an eye patch.
“She has speech therapy, behaviour therapy, rehab and we have had contact with the (Canadian National Institute for the Blind),” Jennifer said. “There’s something every day and sometimes it’s tough to keep it all co-ordinated.”
Natalie has a specialized medical stroller to help her get around and at home she sleeps in a hospital bed. But despite all that, Jennifer is happy to have her home.
“She is home with family, she is in familiar surroundings,” Jennifer said. “We don’t know if she will ever fully recover but she has come a long way.”