Model: Lara Arosemena
Spina Bifida Mielomeningocele and Hydrocephalus, Age 25
My name is Lara Arosemena, I am 25 years old and I was born with a condition called Spina Bifida Mielomeningocele and Hydrocephalus. I am a dreamy, enterprising, hardworking woman, and a fighter who loves to dance, loves Disney and see life in all colors.
Spina Bifida means that when I was born, my spine did not close completely and this caused me to have many sequels that will accompany me throughout my life. In addition, the fingers of my left hand did not fully develop. At the time I was born, the hopes that I would live were few, and the doctors told my parents that my quality of life would not be good and that the chances of me even walking were void. Less than one day after I was born, everyone realized they were witnessing a miracle.
During my 25 years, I have struggled with the complications of my medical condition, fifteen operations including the removal of my left kidney, the placement and sixchanges of the ventricle-peritoneal valve which controls hydrocephalus. Mobility problems to my legs cannot function properly without sensation in the lower part of my legs or distal control in my feet. But it was not until I turned 17 that I had a relapse and became quadriplegic after I had surgery for anchored cord syndrome. In that moment changed my life completely.
The anchored marrow syndrome is one of the many sequelae that spina bifida leaves. I decided to give the psychologist a chance because she told me that the mind is very powerful. After several sessions, little by little I could stop by myself and then I started walking. There I realized that I set my limits.
The Bold Beauty Project has changed my life and the way I see myself. They had never asked me what would you like to be? At the time they asked me I had several ideas that we molded until we realized that my story is very similar to that of The Little Mermaid, so we decided to make a kind of evolution until I can walk, the main focus being my scar on the spine, which I wear with great pride. Many times when people think of pretty women they don’t think of disability, and in my picture, I wanted both things to be seen, my physical disability and my beauty.
Photographed by Celine Eskenazi