From TherAplay Kiddo To Staff Member!
Shelby Lynch is a bubbly nineteen-year-old who is often found smiling as she helps keep the Children’s TherAplay clinic sanitized as a clinic tech. She finds joy being around therapy horses and children with special needs—because she knows what it’s like to rely on hippotherapy.
When Shelby was born, her parents and doctors didn’t hear her heartbeat for fourteen minutes. When she did finally begin breathing, the trauma left Shelby with many developmental delays. Shelby began OT and PT at Children’s TherAplay at two years old.
“We were just trying to look at any way we could help with her speech, muscle tone, helping her to sit up, crawl, and eat,” Shelby’s mother Robin said. “Within a couple months, we just saw a drastic improvement.”
Over the next five years at TherAplay, Shelby learned to walk, feed herself, and hit many other developmental goals. Her time on the horse is one of her earliest memories, and to this day, Shelby loves riding horses and competing. Without TherAplay, that might not have been possible.
“I have moments now when I’m riding horses and think, the fact that I can do this is amazing. That’s what I’m proud of, because I know how hard I’ve worked to get here,” Shelby said.
Shelby’s post-high school plans led her back to Children’s TherAplay as a clinic tech in a very full circle moment. Shelby counts herself forever grateful to Children’s TherAplay, and those who support its mission.
“My family believes strongly I would not be the same person I am today without TherAplay. I wouldn’t be riding horses, and I wouldn’t be doing stuff that I love.”