The American Girl Doll store has been creating dolls that look like their owners for years, providing the options of eye color, hair color, glasses or no glasses, freckles or no freckles, and more. However, now they are going a step further, and the store is offering even more advanced features, including the option to make your American Girl doll a quadruple amputee with the help of a company called A Step Ahead Prosthetics.
Two-year-old Harmonie-Rose Ivy Allen, of Bath, England, received one such doll, named Rebecca, last month. According to ABC News, at only 11-months-old, Harmonie contracted meningitis B and was only given a 10 percent chance of survival by her doctors. Thankfully, her doctors were wrong, and she was able to beat the illness. However, she was put on a life-support machine, and the doctors were forced to amputate her arms and legs just 10 short days after she took her first steps.
“The doctors were unsure what her future would be like and if there was any brain damage, but right now Harmonie seems to show no brain damage,” Harmonie’s mother, Freya Hall, said.
“I love her inside and out,” Hall added. “There’s nothing you can’t love about her. She’s beautiful, funny, smart and she never gives up. She is just so loving. She is quite upfront, too. I have seen her introduce herself to another child by saying, ‘I’m Harmonie and I have no hands.'”
Harmonie has persevered through all of the challenges that have been put in front of her, and for her third birthday, which is coming up in November, her mother wanted to give her something extra special. Freya enlisted the help of one of her friends in New York to get Harmonie a custom doll from the American Girl doll store in Manhattan. The one-of-a-kind doll arrived in England last month, and because Hall was so excited, she decided to go ahead and give it to her daughter.
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“The company that makes then changes many dolls for children so it’s just like them and that did one for her,” Hall told the Mirror. “It will encourage Harmonie to use her own prosthetic legs because she’s not the only one.”
“She just said, ‘Mummy, she’s just like me,'” she said. “She loves to take the arms and the legs off and they love to sit next to each other without the prosthetics on.”
“Harmonie has never seen another quadruple amputee, so it’s amazing to show her that she’s not the only one,” Hall continued. “I’m hoping it will encourage her to go on her prosthetic legs a little more too. At the moment, Harmonie sees her legs more as a hindrance rather than something that will help her.”
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Freya later shared pictures of her daughter with her new American Girl doll on her Facebook page called “Hope 4 Harmonie.”
“Yesterday we decided to give Harmonie her doll because she coped so well with hospital…There is something special about this doll though… She is just like Harmonie… A quadruple amputee!” she wrote. “She has prosthetic arms and legs! And she’s all the way from America from the very famous shop American girl, in New York! She then travelled to A step ahead prosthetic company who adapted her to look just like Harmonie. How amazing is that. As you can see she is already loved very much in this house and I know she will be Harmonies best friend for ever.”
To read more about Harmonie’s story, visit her Facebook page “Hope 4 Harmonie.”
[Image via tishomir/Shutterstock.com]