Girija Srinivas is a grown woman trapped inside the body of a toddler living in Bangalore, India. She doesn’t want anyone’s pity, however, and intends to earn her own living as an artist.
Girija, 19, is suffering from a rare disorder called congenital agenesis of the bones, which has stopped her body from developing normally. She is only 2.5 feet in height and only weighs 12 kg, pretty much the same as the average 2-year-old.
— Daily Mirror (@DailyMirror) April 7, 2015
The weight of her head prevents her from sitting unaided and she is unable to walk. While she can drink a cup of tea or coffee on her own, her mother has to give her constant care, feeding and dressing her.
According to the Bangalore Mirror, when Girija was born, her parents were told that nothing could be done about her condition and that she has to be extremely careful. Should she try to turn her neck quickly, she could suffer a fracture, and she also occasionally has problems breathing caused by the congenital agenesis.
However, despite all her problems, Girjija is already becoming a talented artist and is earning money from her work. She says that she hopes one day to become independent to a certain extent, so that she can help to support her parents.
“I don’t like anyone pitying me, I have shown everyone what my capabilities are.”
“My mother helps me with eating and other normal things. But while I’m painting and drawing I need nobody’s help. I do it myself.”
So far, she is managing to sell five or six paintings each month, earning between 8,000 and 10,000 rupees (around $128-$160).
“I have to look after my parents and I need to have the financial capacity to do that.”
Girija Srinivas lives with her family in Bangalore where her father works as a tailor earning around $7.50 a day. However, her mother cannot work as she has to give Girija full-time care.
— infowe (@infowe) April 7, 2015
Speaking in the video above, produced by Barcroft TV, her mother, Nanda Baayi, describes how difficult it was to hear the diagnosis of congenital agenesis of the bones and how hard it is for them to see their daughter in this condition.
“We faced difficulties from the beginning. Even now, it’s tough for us to look after her. There is immense pain in our heart.”
“When she was born, she was not like other babies. When the doctors told us that her condition was permanent, it broke our hearts.”
According to doctors, Girija needs further evaluation to find the cause of her congenital agenesis and that continuous positive airway pressure therapy may be necessary to help her breathe more easily. However, the cost of such treatment and medical equipment is prohibitive and the family cannot, at present, afford this.
Meet the 19-year-old girl trapped inside a two-year-old’s body: THIS IS Girija Srinivas – a 19-year-old trappe… http://t.co/Ag8p9U9Qbo
— UK News Links (@dlUKnewslinks) April 7, 2015
In the meantime, Girija dreams of being a successful artist and hopes to become more self-sufficient. She stresses that she is not looking for sympathy, but wants recognition for her work.
“I don’t want to be popular because of my rare health condition – I want to be famous someday for my art.”
“I do not want sympathy, I want recognition.”
“I have an aim to achieve more in life. It’s my dream to go abroad and achieve something big.”
While she could never attend school due to her condition, this doesn’t worry Girija and she says that despite receiving many cruel taunts about her unusual size, she does still have a large group of friends and can act like a normal teenager to some extent.
“People say many things about me, laugh at me and call me mad. They even wonder how my father is looking after me.”
“But my family members treat me as a normal person and I have many friends of my age. They never tease me that I am a toddler.”
Despite financial and other problems, Girija’s mother fully supports her daughter’s dreams of a least a little self-sufficiency. Girija may be small as a result of the congenital agenesis, but her heart and her ambitions are fully grown.
The Inquisitr recently reported on another teenager, this time from Utah, suffering from another unusual and rare condition. She has aquagenic urticaria, which means that she is allergic to one of the most basic of human needs, water.
[Images: Screengrab from video]