She is known as “the girl without a face.” This genetic disorder is called Treacher Collins Syndrome and it causes deformations of the face. Juliana Wetmore was born with the disorder, however, hers is the worst case that has been documented.
The doctors had actually noticed irregularities four months before the birth. They couldn’t pinpoint what was wrong, and no one was prepared for how Julia would look when she was born.
The babies face was far from normal looking. Yet the irony is that her body was totally healthy. It was just the face that had missing bones which led to deformations and difficulty breathing. Likely she would not survive the night doctors believed. Juliana fought to keep breathing and ended up staying alive.
It would be 6 years of operations as she continued to fight on. She learned sign language, and went to a school for deaf children, where she excelled. Her family though, is unable to understand how she is really feeling inside. Until something happened…
There was another girl named Danica. She was the same age as Juliana. She suffered the same disorder that Juliana has, albeit much milder. Despite that, she still had faced major hurdles and has had a very tough life. She lived in an orphanage, as she was given up for adoption after birth, in the Ukraine. She has no visitors and as soon as she is old enough to leave, she will be destined to be living on the streets, without any kind of family support system in place.
Juliana is now 12-years-old, and now has had 45 operations. But she also has a new sister that’s been there and understands what she’s going through. The family since has adopted even more children. They now have a group of 6 which have all formed a tribe where both Juliana and Danica are able to thrive in a protected environment. Danica has turned out to be a really good artist, while Juliana continues to amaze with her superior intellect.
The courage that this family has is pretty amazing. Despite the burdens and challenges, they all remain strong and brave.
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