5 months later, seriously injured Cleveland toddler returns home - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

5 months later, seriously injured Cleveland toddler returns home

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CLEVELAND, TN (WRCB) - A Cleveland toddler involved in a serious crash this winter is finally home. After living out of hospitals for five months, two-year-old Katie Barkley is on the mend.

The crash happened on Lee Highway in Cleveland during a snow storm. The car lost control on the icy roads, injuring both Katie and her mother.

It's been a long five months, but little Katie Barkley is home for good. The toddler was spending Wednesday morning dancing to her favorite song with her mom and dad.

"It's nice to see her dance again," said the toddler's mother, Katelynn. "She doesn't quite groove the way she used to, but it'll get there."

Local doctors said the toddler wouldn't move again, but she did, and spent three months beating the odds at a rehab in Maryland. After one final surgery last month, the toddler is now home for good.

But it's a big adjustment, said Katelynn. And a lot of work.

"I wake up, get her up, and un-attach her from all her tubes,"  she said.

A live-in nurse is with the Barkley's 24-hours-a-day as extra help getting Katie around. But despite some physical struggles, Mom said the toddler's spunk is back -- big time.

"The good, the bad and the feisty -- it's there," Katelynn laughed.

Recovery is a long road ahead. The toddler's days are now filled with therapy sessions and different doctor's appointments every couple of weeks "just to make sure she's on track with everything," said Katelynn.

Although some days are better than others, Katie has proved doctors wrong once. That's why her family still has hope that their "new normal" will eventually shift to more like it used to be.

"She can do anything, and she knows it," Katelynn said. "It's all a matter of when she wants to do it. Today's just not her day."

To follow on Katie's progress, click here. To donate click here.

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