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From life in a wheelchair to becoming an NHS Nurse – Rosie Naylor’s inspiring journey

An ’incredible’ student nurse was inspired to join the profession after receiving treatment at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital (RMCH), six years ago.

Rosie Naylor, was 13 years old when she tried to stand, but found that she couldn’t put any weight on one of her legs.

Ronald McDonald House Manchester

Rosie at Christmas undergoing treatment in 2016.

Rosie was admitted to Ward 85 at RMCH, which cares for a range of specialities including cardiology and rheumatology.

Rosie, now 20, said: “I couldn’t move, I couldn’t do anything. They sent an ambulance to my house and from that moment I spent 12 months in hospital.

“I spent six months in a wheelchair undergoing tests and treatments whilst also trying to keep up with school and normal teenage life”.

Investigations into Rosie’s illness are still ongoing but during her time in hospital, she was on a feeding tube, unable to bear weight or hold her head up.

Healthcare workers used several interventions to help with her recovery which included physical and hydrotherapy.

Rosie Unable to Walk

Nicola, Rosie’s mum said: “She was unable to walk for a significant amount of time and one of her legs wouldn’t bend.

She’d been in her wheelchair for a long time, and the day I saw her stand was one of the proudest moments of my life because I just thought ‘That’s my girl, she’s coming back…’.”

After a long 12-month battle, Rosie was home. Inspired by the nurses who looked after her, Rosie made the ultimate decision as she reached university age.

Rosie added: “I started to train to become a nurse in September 2021.

“I’m about to go into my final year now and I absolutely love it.

“I still haven’t got over the fact that I’m becoming a nurse and that I’m training in the hospital that gave me my life back”.

During her illness, Rosie’s family were given accommodation in Ronald McDonald House Manchester, one of 14 Houses across the UK providing free family accommodation next to children’s hospitals.

This means that families can then focus their efforts on supporting their children during the toughest times.

Nicola said: “Going through something so life-changing makes you see things differently.

“It makes you appreciate the smaller things in life.

“Having a sick child changes everything, it just completely rocks your world.

“One of the nurses told me about the Ronald McDonald House. I was told that there was a room available, but I didn’t know what to expect at all.

“I was so overwhelmed when I walked in. I’d been living out of a suitcase for three and a half months, but the room had twin beds, a wardrobe, and even a mirror!

“Just the things you take for granted every day.”

One Proud Mum

Rosie on her way to work at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital

Nicola is bursting with pride at the journey that her daughter has gone through.

She added: “Rosie will make the most phenomenal nurse. The children that she looks after will be very, very lucky to have her in their lives. I just think she’s incredible. She’s just such a strong, inspirational young woman.”

Professor Cheryl Lenney, Director of Nursing at Manchester University NHS FT

When Professor Cheryl Lenney, Director of Nursing at Manchester University NHS FT (MFT), learned about Rosie, she said: “We are so proud that Rosie has chosen MFT to start her nursing career.

“I am always interested as to what inspires our nursing staff to join us, so to learn that Rosie’s experiences as a child in one of our hospitals left such a profound impression on her that she decided to go into nursing has really impressed me.

“I wish Rosie a very long, happy and successful career.”

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