CHERRY CREEK, NY - 17-year old Brittany Dunlap has faced more than her share of challenges, but with hard work and determination, she is achieving her goals.
The Cherry Creek teenager was born with Arthogryposis, which is a severe stiffening of the joints. Brittany has severe muscle weakness in her arms and legs and is confined to a wheelchair... as she has been since she was eight. She can't use her legs or feet -- and has difficulty using her hands. She texts and writes by using her mouth. Brittany does physical and occupational therapy several times a week to keep her muscles loose.
Despite the challenges, she's kept up her grades in hopes of moving on to college someday. That day is now. And if you're wondering, this teenager doesn't feel sorry for herself. Brittany tells us, "I was raised success is my only option. Failure is not an option. Being in a wheelchair doesn't change that. It makes you want it more."
Brittany has had plenty of success in the classroom, in school plays, and on the cheerleading squad. Now, she is off to Edinboro University where she will study to become a math teacher one day. Brittany and her mom decorated her dorm and the teenager says she is ready to go.
A girl who has faced challenges... and has endured awful pain for most of her life ... is pushing through and moving on. She'll be on her own, but it's safe to say, plenty of people will be there with her in spirit.