Grocery store trips weren’t easy for 2-year-old Beatrice and her mother Melody. Beatrice’s cerebral palsy prevents her from being able to fit in a standard cart so mom would have to get creative. That was until her grocery store changed everything
LOVELAND, Colo. – With ribbons, flowers and balloons all over, it’s easy to tell which shopping cart belongs to Beatrice. Born seven weeks early, Beatrice Leach, now 2, was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy at eight-months-old.
“She can’t see very well and she can’t crawl, she can’t talk yet, and she’s legally blind,” her mom, Melody Leach said.
Beatrice’s disability made grocery shopping a challenge. She doesn’t fit in the typical toddler portion of a shopping cart.
“One of her hips has dislocated so she has a hard time sitting on that surface,” her mom said.
“She’s outgrown her stroller at this point, so I put her in her wheelchair and I take her in the store and I can grab a basket, and try to push this with one hand as I carry the basket,” Melody said.
It made shopping trips tedious. Melody could only grab a few groceries before her hands were full. Also, Beatrice was uncomfortable in the wheelchair for so long, which caused problems.
“She’s had seizures in the store – and they happen more frequently when she’s doing something physically demanding like sitting in a wheelchair,” she said.
Melody would either have to make a short trip, or hire a nurse’s aide to watch her daughter while she shopped. Until she had a conversation with an assistant manager at the King Soopers in Loveland, Colorado.
“Stopped me at the service desk one day and she was telling me her daughter’s story and how difficult it was to shop,” assistant store manager Mike Myers said.
“I have a personal experience with one of my friends from back home whose brother has cerebral palsy,” he said.
Myers is also a father and said he couldn’t imagine going through what Leach was. So, he e-mailed a few higher-ups at King Soopers and before he knew it, a special cart was on order.
“Oh my gosh! This’ll fit her forever,” Melody said as she looked at the cart for the first time.
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