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It's a miracle but Donington family's hearts are still breaking for Alethia (11)

A family are on an emotional rollercoaster from joy to heartbreak since a girl of 11 took her first few steps after losing the ability to walk.

Alethia Greenfield has functional neurological disorder and, in January, the condition prevented her from walking at all or even weight-bearing.

But, in the last four weeks, Alethia got to her feet and was able to weight bear - with adult help - for the first time thanks to a series of visits to see horses at an equestrian therapy centre.

Alethia Greenfield with Toby the yellow Labrador
Alethia Greenfield with Toby the yellow Labrador

Since then Alethia has walked unaided at home and even ridden a short distance on a cycle with her mum, Emilia, on one side, and Emilia's boyfriend, Ashley Sterry, on the other.

The bike was bought for Alethia two Christmases ago and she hadn't ridden it until that moment.

While walking at all for Alethia is nothing short of a miracle, the family knows heartbreak is just moments or at most hours away ... and the ability will go just as quickly as it appeared.

Maria, Babis, Emilia and Alethia Greenfield with Toby the dog
Maria, Babis, Emilia and Alethia Greenfield with Toby the dog

It's the same with Alethia's speech.

One moment the bright spark youngster will be chatting away but then her words become indistinct and dissolve into an unintelligible babble.

Alethia's illness forced her to leave Donington Primary School in January and, despite the on-off return of movement, her home-education from Boston's Pilgrim Hospital School continues for the forseeable future.

Earlier this year, people rallied round to help buy a specialist car seat costing £5,000-plus so Alethia could more easily attend medical appointments or go on outings in the family car.

Emilia Greenfield with volunteers at a cake sale in Donington Church Hall
Emilia Greenfield with volunteers at a cake sale in Donington Church Hall

Thanks to The Motability Scheme and public fundraising so far, Alethia's family expect to take delivery of an adapted, seven-seater car later this month.

It means the whole family, including Alethia's sister Maria (14) and brother Babis (13) will be able to go out together.

Emilia said: "I am very grateful for all of the help from everyone."

Donington Co-op donated to Alethia's cause
Donington Co-op donated to Alethia's cause

The mum has shed tears over the sheer generosity of the people who have come to Alethia's aid in her time of crisis, and help has ranged from customers who bought a cake at a sale in Donington Church Hall to free physio offered by Greg and Vicky, from Spalding based State 11 Soft Tissue Therapy.

One of the main treats for Alethia in the school summer holiday was a hot tub from Hot Tub Hire Spalding and Emilia says its boss, Mark Oldreive, has agreed to donate £25 to Alethia's fund when a customer hiring a hot tub mentions Alethia's name.

Previously ...

Fundraising to help Donington girl (11) who has lost her mobility through illness

Fundraising surges for Donington girl Alethia (11)


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