Mini skirt, high heels, streaming long hair, slim shape… From the back, she looks like any other girl. But when she turns around, people shudder with fear.
It all began 21 years ago, when Irina Nezhentseva saw deep wrinkles on the face of her newborn daughter, Katia. The baby’s face grew older within hours. Katia was diagnosed with progeria, a very rare genetic disease, and doctors warned her parents, that she won’t live more than a year. Terrified with his daughter’s condition, Irina’s husband dumped them both. His last words were, “I can’t look at this child”
But Irina was determined to make her daughter’s childhood happy, no matter how short it was.
Despite all the gloomy prognoses, Katia was growing like any healthy child. Later on, she had to face classmates’ bulling. Every day she heard, “Why are you wearing a mini, old lady?” or“Why are you playing a child, old lady?”
But only at school Katia understood how different she was. “I understood that I am not like the others. Whenever I turned around, people were afraid of me”, she says, “I kept asking myself, what I got this for? Then, I realzed, that I can win people’s hearts with my knowledge, intellect and kindness, if my face can’t. It’s soul, that matters, not the looks. That’s what I think."
Katia became not only the best student at school, but everybody’s favorite as well. If somebody bullied her, her numerous friends stood up to them. “I accepted myself and learned to love my body. Just imagine. There are only twenty people in the world with my diagnosis! It’s extraordinary!” Katia’s optimism and good humor charm everyone who deals with her. She has grown into a self-confident young woman. So, what is she planning for the future? To be happy!
Katia’s friends were not the only ones who surrendered to her charisma and a backbone of steel. Denis met Katia very unusually. He dialed her phone number by mistake. They talked a bit, and when they met, a whirlwind romance began. When Denis made a proposal, Katia was the happiest bride in the whole world.
A bit later, the couple had a nice, healthy son.
“I am the happiest woman ever”, she says, “Only confidence helped me to overcome everything. And now, fate has given us a wonderful present, our son. What could be better?”
The story of this girl reminds us, that the most terrible disease can’t prevent a person from being happy.