A local teen is slowly recovering a year after a rare syndrome nearly paralyzed her. 17 News first brought you 14-year-old Davina Ronquillo's story in February.
Fourteen-year-old Davina Ronquillo is all smiles. Slowly, she is able to walk with her walker. Just a year ago, she could barely move after doctors diagnosed her with Guillain-Barre Syndrome. It's a rare auto-immune disorder that damages nerves, weakens muscles and causes the body to shut down.
"I couldn't walk, couldn't get up, and eat, and everything," said Ronquillo.
The former Sequoia Middle School cheerleader spent three months at the children's hospital in Madera. In February, she had a tube hooked to her neck to help her breathe. She could barely talk.
Now, one year later, she's taking life step-by-step. "I say I'm strong because I went through it you know. I'm still here."
"Her life has changed so much. She was a normal, active, 13-year-old," said Davina's mother Gina Ronquillo. "She's able to go to the restroom by herself, she's able to dress herself, there are certain things she can't do because of her hands."
Davina doesn't have full use of her hands and it's difficult for her to pick up things or do her hair. "Sometimes I fall, but it's ok. I get back up and do it again," said Davina.
Davina still uses a motorized chair at school. her family has moved out of Bakersfield, and Davina's now a freshman in high school.
"I look at her and I always say she's my hero, because she's strong. She's a strong little girl," said Gina Ronquillo.
"I just try my best everyday," said Davina.