A child overcoming the challenges of living with one hand due to symbrachydactyly
An interview with Jaida’s mum, Christie. Images by Bec Zacher
This family were nominated for a session and I walked away feeling so incredibly grateful having met such an amazing little girl. Jaida has a syndrome called Symbrachydactyly and it has meant that one of her hands didn’t grow to full size. She was feeling very self-conscious and coming to an age where she was starting to compare herself to other children around her. Christie, Jaida’s mum, said that she was so excited at the thought of having her own photoshoot to celebrate just how beautiful she was and that it was her dream to feel like a princess and do something really girly for the session.
I went shopping and found her a beautiful dress, headband and accessories and couldn’t go past getting some glitter and confetti to play around with for the shoot. The dress fit perfectly and she was so excited during the whole session. I returned to her house a month after the shoot to give her the images, a photo book and a canvas. There was nothing like watching her little smile emerge as she ripped off the wrapping paper and saw the images of herself in print.
“Jaida is constantly talking about her photo shoot and has been so different since it was done. She has more confidence than she ever did before. Instead of doubting what her little hand looks like she keeps saying how special her little hand is and how beautiful it is. She keeps saying I’m special mum because I have a little hand and I can do everything. She feels like a superstar!”
Here is a little about Jaida’s story.
Tell us about Jaida and what she is like
Jaida is 5 years old she in 10 minutes younger than her identical twin sister Tjala. Jaida is of Aboriginal descent with her father’s side being Warai tribe from Darwin and also Mirning From the Great Australian Bight, South Australia. Jaida is a vibrant and outgoing little girl who tries hard in everything she does. She has an energy that only she can radiate. She is truly an angel sent from above.
What condition was Jaida born with and what is her outlook on life?
Jaida has a syndrome called Symbrachydactyly, which occurs in 1 in 32000 newborns. It’s where one part of the body does not form properly and it most commonly occurs in the hand. It is known to be from a lack of tissue and there is nothing that could be done to prevent it. It is just a random thing that occurs.
Jaida has symbrachydactyly of her right hand. Having Jaida is like winning the lotto. We got the 1 out of 32000. Having her little hand makes her the vibrant happy little girl she is. Her little hand is so cute. When she walks out of class waving her precious and beautiful little hand with such enthusiasm and confidence, I feel like for a moment that the other parents wish that their children could have such a beautiful little hand like Jaida. It makes my heart melt.
What should make her wrong, makes her right is so many more ways then I could ever have imagined. I am so proud and happy that I have a beautiful little girl who shows me the meaning of magic every single day of my life. Her personality and passion for life inspires me.
What gives her strength to keep going when times get tough or she is feeling self-conscious about her hand?
Jaida has the type of personality that won’t let anyone prove her wrong. She can do anything she puts her mind to. Her mind is working overtime to work out how to do something before anyone else with two hands has even began to think about it. Jaida has always been in front of her twin when it comes to crawling, walking, reading, and writing, and she isn’t stopping there.
She has come first in her heat for her 100 metre sprint in Prep and in the top 10 prep girls at her school. She can kick, catch a ball, handball a football and is full of dreams. When she grows up she wants to be a doctor. When she is going through a tough time and starts to doubt herself, she will have a little cry and ask me questions such as, why do I have a little hand? I just want a big hand like my sister and all my friends, but then something inside of her will overcome the pain and she will try even harder to prove to people she is capable of even more then they could ever imagined. She has even learnt how to tie her own shoe laces.
How does Jaida go at school and how do other children treat her?
A recent parent teacher interview has opened my eyes up immensely. All of the things I thought Jaida would struggle with she is excelling at. Jaida’s teacher has told me that she is one of the most popular students in class and everyone wants to be her partner. She is an inspiration to the teachers and her classmates as much as she is to me and her father and her siblings.
How does she feel having had some images done through the Frames of Hope project that show her just how beautiful she is?
Jaida is so over the moon with being the special one. After having these photo’s done she has even more confidence than she ever did before. Instead of doubting what her little hand looks like she keeps saying how special her little hand is and how beautiful it is. She keeps saying I’m special mum because I have a little hand and I can do everything. She feels like a superstar!
Jaida is constantly talking about her photo shoot and has been so different since it was done. She has a confidence she has never had about how beautiful and special she is. We are so grateful to you for giving her this new love she has for her special little hand.
Thank you so much.
Christie, Jaida’s mother.
PRODUCTS WE GIFTED JAIDA AND HER FAMILY THROUGH FRAMES OF HOPE