Mermaid Girl

Tonight I watched a documentary on TLC about an 8-year-old girl who has a rare condition called sirenomelia. The condition is when a baby, still in the womb, has their legs fused together. It is very rare that these babies survive childbirth and the few that have survived have had their legs separated as babies. Shiloh Pepin was a different case. Doctors did not expect her to survive birth let alone 8 years.When Shiloh was born, she had no genitalia, 1/4 of a kidney, almost no large intestine, no bladder and only one ovary. Just that she was alive at birth was a miracle. At 4 months of age, her small kidney failed and she received her first kidney transplant. She spent 3 years on dialysis until she received her second kidney transplant in August 2007. She survived again. Over 8 years, she has had over 150 medical procedures. You would think a child that has gone through all this would be on upset little kid.

You would be wrong.

She is one of the happiest kids you will ever come across. Watching the show, I was amazed at her attitude. Most 8-year-olds throw tantrums for trivial things like having to eat vegetables. Shiloh looks at her condition and is happy to be "the mermaid girl". In fact, recently the family had to make a decision about whether or not to separate her legs to prepare for impending puberty and complications involving her spine. Her parents decided it should Shiloh's decision despite her age. Shiloh would have had to have 13 years worth of surgery to complete the separation process. That is a lot to ask an 8-year-old to go through.

Shiloh decided not to have the surgery - to just enjoy life. Many of us could learn a lot from this little girl. Though she was dealt an awful hand - she has managed enjoy life to its fullest.

If you would like to make a donation to help the family with medical bills, visit her website. Check your local listings to check out this documentary on TLC.

This entry was posted on Monday, December 29, 2008 and is filed under , . You can leave a response and follow any responses to this entry through the Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom) .


Inspiring....makes you appreciate what we take for granted.


Her story really touch my heart I complain about the small in life and i am glad she is doing great