Looking Beyond the Challenge

January 10, 2013 Updated Jan 10, 2013 at 1:40 PM EDT

By WKBW News
By Jaclyn Asztalos

...
January 10, 2013 Updated Jan 10, 2013 at 1:40 PM EDT

Lancaster, N.Y. (WKBW) - Emily Keicher is a gourmet cook, a little princess and now a cover girl but it was a long road to get where she is today.

"The doctor came in and said in some sonogram pictures, it looked like there was a whole in the baby's spine," Mom Elizabeth Keicher said.

Little Emily was diagnosed with a form of Spina Bifida, which comes with a host of symptoms.

"They told us we could expect paralysis, bowel and bladder problems," Keicher said.

Emily is doing well at three-years-old but this story is not about her condition. It's about looking passed the walker and crutches to this beautiful little girl and her sparkling personality. That is just what Parents Magazine did in their latest issue.

"Parents Magazine reached out to the Spina Bifida Association to feature some different labeled kids," Keicher said.

Emily was not only featured in the magazine

"Maybe they'll pick Emily to be on the cover," Keicher said.

She got the prime spot and nowhere in the entire issue was there mention of her condition.

"They were looking to photograph her as a typical model and there would not be an article on Spina Bifida and it would not be including a section on special needs. This is the first time Parents Magazine would feature a differently-abled child in the capacity of a typical model," Keicher said.

This is something the Editor of the Magazine Dana Points said they want to do on a regular basis.

The Keichers said this is a step in the right direction for Emily and all children to be looked at as they should, a cook, a princess and a model, with the condition taking the back seat.

"While Emily has Spina Bifida, it doesn't define her, she defines Spina Bifda and what's she's going to do," Keicher said.