Even with knees that won't bend, seven-year-old Addie Bryan is outrunning her past.
"She has a condition called Larsen syndrome," explained Julie Bryan, her mom. "When she was born, her knees were backward, her legs were all the way up to her head, she had hip dysplasia, and a club foot".
Bryan says at just five days old, Addie was outfitted with the first of many casts.
"She has probably had between 60 and 70 casts," her mother said. "She has had a lot."
Addie has endured four surgeries, too.
"We didn't know if she would ever walk, if she would ever run. We didn't know any of that," Bryan said.
Addie is now doing all that... and more. She proudly shared how normal her life is now.
"I'm back at home walking and having fun with all my friends," Addie said.
Her progress is thanks in large part to extensive, free care she has received at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital in Dallas, where Addie has become a fixture.
She's on the hospital's calendar cover, and she's especially preoccupied with one date inside that calendar — her birthday, August 16, when she will turn eight.
That's why Addie has her heart set on an $8,000 gift! It's not for her; it's money she plans to give to the hospital that has given her so much.
Early in the mornings, and on hot afternoons, Addie has been asking for donations.
"I just hold a sign that says, 'For my birthday, I want to raise $8,000 for Scottish Rite Hospital.'"
She's held that sign on a busy street corner in Rockwall, and she has been on her parents daily to keep taking her back out there.
"If she can get out there and do this, we can be there with her on the corner and supporting her," Julie Bryan said.
Addie is already more than halfway to her goal, with $4,500 collected. She hopes the money will go to buy "new prosthetics and casts... to help all the other kids" at Scottish Rite Hospital.
Jeff Bryan said his daughter has had a special drive through all of the challenges she has faced. "She has been the one to pull us through, more than the other way around," he said.
But this dad says even given all her improbable physical accomplishments over the years, the fact that Addie is taking this particular stand brings him a special sort of pride.
"To be able to give back to that hospital… words don't describe it," he said.
If you'd like to contribute, the Bryans have set up a donation page at the YouCaring website. Addie hopes to present an $8,000 check to Texas Scottish Rite on August 16.