June 2023 AMCer

If you would like to help an AMCer like this one, click here to donate to Helping AMC Families Incorporated

Harmony Duffield

My age: 28

My favorite things: books, binge watching Gilmore girls and Studio Ghibli movies, and volunteering at WV 4-H camps in the summer

Number of siblings: 8

Number of surgeries to date: 6

Assistance provided: installation of a wheelchair ramp on my new home!

Harmony was born in 1994 and at just 10 days old she was diagnosed with Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita (AMC). For the first six months of her life, Harmony wore casts to correct her club feet. This treatment of putting on and taking off casts repeatedly until corrections are made is called serial casting and is a common first treatment for children with AMC who are born with club foot. At the conclusion of her serial casting, Harmony had tendon release surgery in both ankles to release the tightness and bring her feet into a more standard position.

When Harmony was seven, she had a muscle transfer surgery. Her pectoralis major muscle from her chest was moved to her left arm to create a bicep because like many AMCers she had missing or weak muscles at birth and did not have enough bicep muscle in her arm to give her the ability to bend her left arm upward. When Harmony was 12 she had a full spinal fusion to correct the scoliosis in her spine and when she was 19 she had a corrective surgery on her left wrist to fuse the wrist into a neutral position in order to help her use her hand more/have more grip strength.

When Harmony was in elementary school, the physical therapist insisted that she use a walker to get around because the therapist felt it was better for Harmony, even though there was no evidence to prove that was best. Harmony pushed back and begged her mom to let her use a wheelchair because walking was hurting her and it also used up so much precious energy that Harmony did not have. Harmony is very thankful that her mom listened to her. Her wheelchair is freeing for her and gives her great independence without pain. It allows her to go to the store, get to work, and even allowed her to be in the marching band and choir when she was in high school!

As an adult, Harmony has been working for some time now at a hospital and she was one of the first recipients of a Helping AMC Families Incorporated financial award! In December 2021, Harmony received $5000 to help her purchase a wheelchair accessible vehicle that was desperately needed in order to continue getting to and from work. Because of that assistance and continuing to work over the last year and a half, Harmony was recently able to purchase her first HOME! However, her new home does not have a wheelchair ramp to allow her access to the home from her vehicle.

This month, the Helping AMC Families financial award will help Harmony take her wheelchair into the greatest place on Earth, her own home! Harmony said, “I am beyond thankful that this grant is available to help people. With the help of Helping AMC Families Incorporated I will be able to safely get out of my car and enter my house via a concrete ramp, which will last a long time.”

Helping AMC Families Incorporated is happy to assist Harmony with the contractor expenses for the installation of a wheelchair ramp that will assist her in getting from her vehicle into her new home.

If you would like to help an AMCer like Harmony,
click here to donate to Helping AMC Families Incorporated

Nana : Would you rather be rich or kind?

Ana : Kind

Nana : Why?

Ana : Because kind people do beautiful things.

– AMC Princess Ana & Nana