Inspiring Bikini Photo of Teen With Rare Condition Goes Viral

Pregnancy and childbirth can wreak havoc on a woman's body. As your baby is screaming or your toddler is throwing rice on the floor, it can be easy to focus on the negative -- the stretch marks, the saggy breasts, the baby bump that will never go away. The next time you want to complain about the slightly displeasing side effects of that miraculous time, check out the inspiring words of this teen with a rare disease.


And check out that picture? Isn't she the picture of confidence?

This amazing teen is Isa-Bella Leclair, who lives with Parkes Weber Syndrome, an extremely rare disease in which the person is born with multiple abnormal blood vessels in an area of their body (hers is the right leg). This disease also causes the lymphatic system to swell, congenital heart failure due to the excess blood, and a propensity for life-threatening infection.  

But Leclair doesn't focus on her condition and the side effects. Instead, she focuses on loving her body and her life. And the proof is in her bikini shot that's going viral. The first time (OK, first few times) I looked at the photo I didn't even notice her leg! I saw a self-assured young woman striking a pose on the beach. I saw her zest for life and her "whatever you give me, I can take it" attitude. And her words? Her approach to life will bring a tear to your eye:

My condition doesn't define me and no way I will let it stop me from wearing a cute swimsuit or a cute dress. I don't fit in skinny jeans or fancy shoes so I have to find alternatives, but I always end up still feeling good about my body. For me, confidence is the most important part, because when people see someone confident in their body -- even with a handicap -- they don't have pity but instead admiration, and that's when you have the chance to be a good influence and change the standards of beauty.

These days so many of the photos that go viral center around parents shaming their children, or embarrassing celebrity mishaps. It's refreshing to see a normal girl with an unfortunate condition and her heart-of-gold perspective. The fact that so many people shared her photo and her story is proof of the positivity in social media.

And her attitude will sure make me think the next time vanity strikes and I want to hate on the stretch marks that are the product of two kids. Instead, I'll find a way to feel good about my body.


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