Through it all, Lyn recalls that Dr. Vitale always kept Greta the center of his attention. “He always talks to Greta. It’s always about how she’s doing, how she’s feeling,” she says.
“Greta is an amazing kid. This is a kid with a tough disease, it’s a disease that affects the body of children, not their minds,” Dr. Vitale says. “A really important part of what we do is to connect with that individual patient and make them feel special and cared for.”
Throughout the whole process, “Greta has had really natural growth in her own body and all of her organs were also able to develop appropriately,” Lyn says. “I’m able to sit comfortably in my chair and my posture is probably better than most people’s,” Greta adds.
An Advocate for Inclusivity
Since her surgery, Greta has started a new school, made a short film at film camp, recorded a podcast on inclusive dance, and even appeared on live TV with her dance troupe. But even when she felt her weakest right after her last surgery, Greta continued to blog about her experience from her hospital bed, with Lyn typing for her.
“When I first started writing my blog, that was really the start of my advocacy,” she says. “I’m in my first year of high school now, and the older I get, the more I notice the challenges I face every day — and the more I want to get involved in making a change.”
She hopes that sharing her perspectives on her blog and social channels will help change the way others think about people with disabilities. “People assume that I don’t live a good life and I want their pity, but in reality, I have had so many amazing opportunities and experiences,” she says. “With every surgery that I have had, with every ventilator and with every wheelchair, I have lived my life to the fullest.”