“An Amazing Feeling”

Freshman defies her disabilities with dance


Shannon-Renee Odoi

Freshman Mili Gallardo joins dance team this year at Heritage.

Shannon-Renee Odoi, Reporter

After a long a wait to the new school year, freshman Mili Gallardo has achieved her lifelong dream of joining the dance team. Because of her leading example of not letting her disabilities; being unable to walk, stop her, she has become a very impactful role model here at Heritage.

“She does a really good job navigating the class,” dance teacher Cami Cole said. “There are different times that I’ve sat down next to her so we can make sure she’s able to do everything or figure out what visually looks best with seated versus standing, but she does a good job.”

Mili is treated and works self-sufficiently.

“Most of the time it’s independently,” Cole says. “There’s like a few situations where maybe we’re doing a lot of feet work, so we’re kinds having to figure out where she does different things. She is really happy-go-lucky and always willing to try things.”

Mili does not let being unable to walk crush her dreams of being a dancer someday.

“Because it helps me with outside cheer, and since we do different routines in cheer,” Mili said. “It makes me feel happy because I’m learning something new that I’ve never really done before.”

Dance not only gives Mili something to do, but also helps her with other school activities.

“Being with my friends; trying out something new, memorizing a whole routine and performing in front of your class is an amazing feeling,” Mili said.

Friendship is one of Mili’s biggest aspects for being part of the team.

“I think she can do dance for a long time here at Heritage, just fine. As long as she keeps working hard like she does,” Cole said.