By G9ija

A 18­year ­old Hebron girl in the North West of Palestinian city is looking forward to her 19th birthday. Doctors had given Ontlametse Phalatse at least until 14 years to live due to her condition.

She suffers from a rare disease that causes premature aging called Progeria. The now 18 year old is celebrating a milestone, never thought she would live to see and she is looking forward to find a boyfriend because she is a women and has needs. “Well I am excited that I am really here, at the same time nervous.

I don’t know what to expect probably, I am just going to dance and celebrate with the rest.”

Growing up was not easy but with support she was able to live a normal life. Phalatse says she was different from other children with that making her life even more difficult thing.

“I never even knew what Progeria was by then. I always assumed in whatever rumours that were out there, which was difficult not for only me but my family as well.” Reaching this milestone has motivated Ontlametse’s hopes to inspire others with her condition.

“I like psychology and motivational speaking, so I am going to study despite the challenges I might face.” Ontlametse is a story of hope and triumph. For now plans are underway for her 19th birthday, and she hopes to see many more and she also need a man in her life.