Progeria Patient Inspires Student


Sanah Jivani, Staff Writer

Butterflies flitted around in my stomach when I saw her for the first time. Sitting on her mother’s shoulders, she laughed and clapped her hands with a smile that could light the world. Five years old, Adalia Rose was diagnosed with Progeria the day she was born. Progeria, a rapid aging disease, causes children to age eight to 10 times faster than the normal person. Children with Progeria only live to an average age of 13.

For several months before meeting her, I had seen her videos on her Facebook page with over 4 million likes. Adalia has captured hearts around the world with her bright personality that can make anyone smile. Her videos promote positive messages such as confidence and putting an end to cyber bullying. I knew I could always turn to these videos when I was having a bad day. When I first saw her positive spirit, she won my heart and I knew I had to meet her. I got in contact with her through Facebook and told her my story. Before I knew it, I was meeting Adalia Rose.

When I held Adalia in my arms for the first time, I truly saw all the beauty she carried. The individual features that shaped her face made her unique and beautiful. I definitely understood the struggle of being different. When I looked into her eyes for the first time I saw a normal five year old girl. It taught me that despite the differences people may carry, at the end of the day, we all have something in common.

I followed Adalia and her mom into their apartment. The living room was filled with toys belonging to Adalia. She showed me all of her things. As I joined her to a tea party, I took a look around the house. For the four people living there, a two room apartment was not ideal. Her mom smiled down at me. I smiled back realizing that the material possessions did not matter in this house. Adalia and her mom were happy with what they had.

Before I left, I hugged Adalia and her mom one last time. I sat in the car and stared out the window thinking about all the things in my life I take for granted. I can think of many times where I have been unhappy because I feel like I am missing something. Sometimes I am so busy thinking of all the things I do not have that I miss out on all the great things I do have. I can definitely tell just by looking at their smiles that Adalia and her mom are thankful for every good thing in their lives. Adalia not only taught me to be thankful, but she taught me to have a great spirit through every obstacle in my life no matter how hard it may be. Regardless of her hardships, she keeps her spirits high and inspires others to do the same.