Local Yakima women will walk painlessly for the first time in 2022!
You never know what kinds of personal struggles people face. Well done to all who are ready to share their trials and tribulations in the hope that it helps people get up in the morning, take their first steps, and in Holly’s case, run!
Holly Cousens, a local resident of Yakima, was born with Club Feet. Something that happens to 1 in 1,000 children. In the 1980s, normal protocol, especially in the South, where Holly was born, was to cut off the feet and use prosthetics, but her parents did not have it. .
“My mom and dad made it their mission to find me doctors who could help me walk and that’s exactly what’s been happening since then.” Lots of doctors and even more surgeries, reaching 25 in total over the years, this is what it looks like. First, she was told she would never work. She walks, with pain, but she walks. She was told at 20 or 30 that she would lose her feet. She is now 40 years old and still has both of her feet, full of scars and pins, but they are there! His last operation involved a metal plate, 36 screws and some serious news.
His doctors told him that was about it, after putting as many pins in his feet as possible, he was told that there was nothing else to do. Holly faces pain, every time she walks. If she’s up, it should only be a few hours before she takes a break, or she’s going to be really sore.
Growing up, she was never able to jump on trampolines with her friends and was never able to enjoy the feeling of walking barefoot on the sandy beaches. It’s with shoes on or not, that uneven softness is horrible for what it does. She has never even experienced jumping or running.
She kept looking for a way to be pain free and, shockingly, found it in Gig Harbor, Washington. The only place in the whole world with a doctor who invented the ExoStem. A splint that relieves your feet, knees and hips from all the pressure when you walk. Dr. Ryan has helped injured veterans return to active service. Allowed athletes to compete again and in the past three years, with acceptance of the program, civilians walk pain free!
Holly applied to the program and was accepted. In January 2022, she will receive her personalized ExoStem orthotics and will have the chance to run for the very first time in her life! Each corset is designed specifically to fit the individual and they don’t come cheap. Holly needs two, they cost $ 10,000 per brace and so far they’ve been able to raise $ 12,000 to meet her goal of $ 20,000.
One of the most interesting parts of his journey is being hesitant to let people know about his struggle. She’s ready to share her story and hopes to not only collect enough for her braces, but enough for others as well. I mean 1 in 1,000 means there are a lot of people in pain. Ask her anything, she says she’s an open book when it comes to this process, so if you are able to donate some money or share her story, that would be greatly appreciated!
One of Dr Ryan’s patience