Nearly two years ago, a curious Athens, Alabama, girl was inspecting the bright light bulbs on her mother’s light-up vanity. A split second later, she was missing nearly all of her fingers on her right hand.
“I was in the next room and heard a pop and a scream. [I] ran in to find her fingers dangling from her hand and blood everywhere,” recalled now 4-year-old Aubry Harper’s mother, 36-year-old Alesha, according to the Daily Mail.
An ambulance was immediately called, rushing the girl to a local hospital where doctors and nurses were waiting for Aubry, who was then helicoptered to a children’s hospital in the state.
Aubry underwent a 3-hour surgery during which doctors worked to reattach her fingers to her hand. Unfortunately, only a part of her pinky was salvaged, leaving Aubry with largely just a palm.
“I don’t think there’s a word to describe how we felt in that scenario; shocked is an understatement,” said Alesha, adding her daughter was forced to relearn how to do things with her left hand. “We almost thought that was it for Aubry’s right hand.”
But after she was discharged from the hospital, Aubry and her family were referred to a clinic in New Jersey that could make the young girl a mechanical prosthetic. Nearly a year later, Aubry has her new hand.
“It’s changed her life — she’s able to be a little girl again and do the things she loves,” Alesha said, according to the Daily Mail. “Having [a] second hand makes Aubry feel safe again — she can go on the swings, ride her bike and just go about her everyday life again with two hands.”
The prosthetic, which the 4-year-old received free of charge, is operated by muscles in the upper part of Aubry’s right arm, according to the Daily Mail. When she moves her muscles, the artificial hand opens and closes.
“Even though she was doing amazing without the prosthetic and was adapting to life without one, the extra hand has really helped her,” added Alesha. “After the incident, she was scared of a lot of things, but having the use of her second hand back has made her feel better and less upset or confused about what happened.”