Jordan Reeves is inspiring many children with disabilities. She published a book in 2019 that talked about her experiences.
A teenager from Missouri is inspiring many folks after she turned her disability into an extraordinary power. According to Good News Network, 14-year-old Jordan Reeves used her under-developed limb to launch her superhero alter ego, Glitter Girl.
Reeves whose left arm stopped developing beyond her elbow created a 3D-printed prosthetic arm that shoots biodegradable glitter in 2016.
She was motivated to design such a thing after she attended a STEM workshop for kids with upper-limb differences, according to Today. The workshop encouraged kids with disabilities to think creatively about their condition.
“They told us that we could design anything that we wanted to off of our disability. I decided that I wanted to shoot glitter. It was just really in the moment, like, ‘This would be really cool,'" said Reeves to Today. So the young girl used the 3D printer at her disposal to design her own prosthetic arm.
However, her design was not fully ready. After the camp, Reeves returned home and continued to work on the design. With weekly calls and consultation with a professional designer, Reeves gave life to her design called "Project Unicorn."
Her mother, Jen Lee Reeves, posted the story of her daughter's creation online. Soon, Reeves's story went viral. She became a role model for children with disabilities. Before she even realized, she was giving talks and making headlines everywhere in the country.
She gave multiple TEDx talks and even got the chance to appear on Shark Tank and The Rachel Ray Show. With every opportunity that came her way, Reeves encouraged other kids who faced difficulties like her to embrace themselves.
Personally, it allowed her to become more confident. “I've always been really public about everything, and I've grown up to be confident about myself,” said Reeves, according to Today.
In 2017, she and her mom co-founded a non-profit organization called Born Just Right. The foundation aims to bring families and kids with similar challenges together. Besides, it supported kids to come up with creative solutions to deal with their physical differences.
Moreover, the mother-and-daughter duo also used their foundation to advocate the importance of representation of children with challenges. Reeves wrote a petition to the American Girl to create a doll with limb differences. Recently, she partnered with Mattel to create a Barbie with a prosthetic leg.
Additionally, the young girl also published a book about her experiences in 2019.
Reeves is undoubtedly a hero in the eyes of many. Children reach out to her and tell her how much she has impacted their lives. However, Reeves does not like to give herself much credit. She stated, "I think it's really cool. I don't think I see myself as someone that big, and just knowing that kids are inspired by me just blows my mind.”
With all that she has achieved in a brief time, her mother is "super proud" of her. “What I think people don't realize is this was years and years of work that Jordan has put in … she's proved that time and energy can really lead to big things if you just keep believing," said the smitten mom.
Reeves, on the other hand, credits her mother for being her strongest pillar of support. “My mom (is my role model) because she's always been there for me, and she's confident and amazing, and I love her,” said the teenager. She also appreciated her parents for giving her the time to figure out things on her own.
“I like to do stuff on my own. I appreciated (my parents’ approach) a lot because I feel like I'd be more needing help with everything and I wouldn't be confident in my ability to do things. I appreciate them doing that," said Reeves, according to Today.
Though Reeves is confident and has achieved a lot, she still gets frustrated with people who stare at her arm. “I feel like the hardest part about having a disability is judgment. You really just want to blend in at some times. At some points, you just want to stand out and I get that. But when you do stand out, the stares can really hurt sometimes."
She added, "I'd like to be seen as my personality and not by my disability because I think I have a good personality.”