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‘Some people think she’s cursed by God’: Dad posts sweet photos of toddler daughter born with ‘black eye’ birthmark to beat bullies who say she’s being punished for something HE did
An inspiring dad has posted pictures of his two-year-old daughter’s birthmark in a bid to beat bullies who say the two-year old is cursed by God.
Project manager Nathan Whalen, 38, from Calgary, Canada, almost passed out when he first learned that his daughter, Samara was born with a black birthmark across her face, initially mistaking it for a bruise.
‘We had no idea there was anything wrong as doctors said she was perfectly healthy girl, so this came as a shock,’ he explained.
‘I thought it was initially a bruise from travelling down the birth canal. I thought she was hurt so I was yelling at the doctors to get her help,’ he added.
And while his wife, Amy, burst into tears when she heard that the baby was born with a birthmark, when she held Samara in her arms she instantly started kissing her face and told her she was beautiful.
‘After the shock wore off my wife and I looked at each other and made a promise to be proud and content that she was beautiful and healthy.
‘We accepted the birthmark. We offered her a prayer to God to give her strong will and courage for the rest of her life,’ he said.
Doctors warned the couple that if they did operate on the birthmark, their daughter may lose her eyesight and possibly develop glaucoma, an eye condition in which the optic nerve is damaged by the pressure of fluid in the eye.
They made the agonizing decision not to go through with corrective surgery.
‘It can grow larger as her face grows. It will get lighter as it stretches out. She can develop glaucoma in her left eye from this and there is a small possibility she can lose her eyesight if we attempt surgery,’ he said.
‘She can have surgery at around five years old. This will consist of seven to nine surgeries over a five-year period. There is no guarantee it will be completely removed because of the areas around and on her eye.’
And while surgery in the future is an option, the family still may not go through with it if Samara is at risk of losing her eyesight.
The tot has already faced mixed reactions from the public, particularly at her daycare, where children laugh or point. She has had to learn to hold her own from a young age because of this.
‘Some kids run away from her scared; that pains me to see that. Whereas, [other] kids walk up to her and say she is beautiful and unique; that melts my heart,’ Nathan said.
Adults have something to say, too.
‘Some people think it is a black eye and are concerned, others think it is makeup and laugh. Some people think she’s cursed by God, and some even say that she is [being] punished for something I may have done in the past.’
Nathan shared that he and his wife worry about the stigma she will face as she gets older: ‘The doctors say when she turns four, she will begin to self-asses and internalize her image more. Other kids do look at her and say “yucky”. This does hurt me as a parent to hear this from kids.’
And the family is also unsure what the future will bring.
‘I often wonder about her confidence when she becomes a teenager. I wonder if she will ever date or get married or get a job because of her birthmark,’ he added.
‘I just want her to live a normal life. Sometimes we just want to blend in and Samara can’t ever just ‘blend in’ even for a minute.’
However, for now, Nathan and Amy want to use Samara’s uniqueness as a way to help others.
‘Luckily Samara’s birthmark is not life threatening, but I still want people to know skin conditions can cause major psychological damage and should not be ignored or understated,’ he concluded.