In a city in India called Bangalore, a mother strolls her child down a dusty street. At first glance, the little girl in the stroller seems to be about two years old. But the child isn’t two at all; she isn’t even a child, but a teenager! Girija Srinivas is 19 years old but measures just 2 ½ feet tall and weighs 26 pounds!
Girija was born with congenital agenesis, a rare condition that has made her bones fragile and has stunted her growth. She cannot sit up by herself or feed or dress herself, so her mother does these things for her. If she moves suddenly, she could fracture her delicate bones. But Girija’s mind is healthy and she is determined to make a living for herself.
Ever since Girija was young, she has enjoyed art - it is something she can do by herself. She makes beautiful pictures and sells them, raising money to help her family. Eventually, Girija hopes to be independent and provide for her parents with the money she makes.
Girija has often been taunted and laughed at because of her size. But the brave teenager doesn't let that stop her. “I am not sad for being small,” she says. “My family treats me as a normal person, and I have many friends my own age. They never tease me that I am a toddler.” And with the help and support of her family and friends, Girija continues to pursue her dreams.