Nobody knows how it feels to be a child on fire except other burned children.
Though I wasn’t burned as a child, I understand that many pediatric burn survivors turn into turtles.
They start hiding for a good reason.
One of Ryan Shines’ burn kids, Kaleigh, was burned in an electrical fire.
She was severely burned on her arms, stomach, and upper legs.
She tended to keep her head down, feeling great shame.
Humiliation tried to take her down.
But our “Catching Courage” events raised her up.
I want you to meet the new version of Kaleigh.
She has spent much of her young life trying to come to terms with her burns.
And she is.
Even though the pain in her eyes was obvious, now you can see something new being born in her.
Kaleigh found her Sparkle.
Let me give you an example.
She met a fellow 13-year-old burn survivor named ‘Lovely,’ and they began a wonderful friendship.
Every time they get together at one of our Catching Courage Events, they are inseparable and the sparks fly.
Their ‘God-sparks’ shine like polished steel.
Let me tell you what happened to these girls early this month.
One of our firefighters had overheard Kaleigh and Lovely talking together about their dreams of the future(this was at our Catching Courage family weekend).
They were saying how they wish they could be models someday but knew it would be impossible because of their scars.
Our firefighter shared how sad he was when he heard these two 13-year-old girls talking about their dreams of the future and what is not possible anymore.
A friend of his, who happens to own a dress shop–Jo Wells in Montgomery–decided to step into the situation, and open her shop and her heart to them.
“I want those girls to model my clothes in my shop,” she said.
So, she arranged a photoshoot and called us at “Ryan Shines” to invite the girls to come model for her.
The word spread like a great party.
Countless firefighters from Montgomery climbed on board with us and even brought their big red firetruck.
Suddenly, there was an influx of new friends we didn’t know we had!
What a celebration!
We were celebrating Kaleigh and Lovely!
And the dreams they were dreaming were already beginning to blossom.
Don’t you just love that?!
BTW-(If this is something that you would like to support, please visit us at www.ryanshines.com or follow us on FB and IG @Ryanshinesburnfoundation)