They had imagined it and thought about it on countless occasions but nothing could prepare Chloe New’s family for seeing their 11-year-old take her first unaided controlled steps.
Chloe is currently in Perth in Scotland for intense physiotherapy after her operation in America ten weeks ago for specialist surgery to help her walk.
On her first day, her physiotherapist wanted to put her through her paces to find out exactly where she was up to with her progress.
Said Angela: “He wanted to see what she could do and she just took a couple of steps. It was amazing to see, completely unexpected. We didn’t think she would walk yet.
“I thought maybe in the next couple of months but not yet.
“We knew she would be pushed hard but we didn’t expect it, it was amazing.”
Chloe is in Scotland for an intense bout of treatment to strengthen her muscles.
She is using treadmills and climbing machines to help her gain strength, confidence and control.
“We didn’t know what to expect really but she is working very hard,” said Angela.
“Her physiotherapist is a former army fitness instructor and she is spending a full two hours in the gym every day.
“She’s so pleased with herself, she is so determined. We are really proud of how well she is doing.”
Physiotherapist Mike Poole, of MP Fitness in Perth commended Chloe’s positive attitude.
He said: “ Chloe, came into the therapy centre and her attitude was fantastic.
“I told her how at MP Fitness we train everyone like a potential athlete, not just with our physical approach but also mentally.
“She said - ‘bring it on!’”
Chloe had her operation in America at the end of May following a huge fund raising drive to raise £60,000 to go to St. Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri.
The selective dorsal rhizotomy operation is a surgical technique developed to reduce spasticity and improve mobility in patients with cerebral palsy, which Chloe has.
The operation involved the selective division of sensory rootlets in the spine, maintaining a balance between elimination of spasticity and preservation of function.