The tiny baby was covered from head to toe in large brown moles. Since birth, Yulianna has suffered from congenital melanocytic nevus - discolored and hairy skin abnormalities. The medical professionals had never before seen such an extreme case. They told the girl's family that she would probably only survive a few hours. But Yulianna is now 26 years old, and a fun-loving young woman!
Due to the many, large pigmentation patches (especially on her stomach and back), her childhood was dominated by people gazing at her and other kids teasing her: "I was either called Dalmatian, cow or giraffe at school," the daughter of a Ukrainian mom and Lebanese dad reminds herself. "But I was always optimistic and learned to think nothing of it." Yulianna confidently makes her way through life - posing in social media without fear and celebrating her differences. About 16,000 people alone follow her on Instagram.
"I try to show others with congenital melanocytic nevus that they can lead normal lives without having to shun away from others," says the 26-year-old who now lives in Warsaw. "I was born different, you too were born different, we were all born different. But I am a happy person, I have friends, a family who supports me, a great job...I am just like anyone else!"
Yulianna has already succeeded in her mission: "It's unfathomable how beautiful you are and very inspirational," is one of the comments under one of her photos. "My five-month-old daughter was born with a large mole and is getting more. Some days I feel sad when I think about all that she will have to go through...but it comforts me to see your pictures and realize how happy you are. Thank you for sharing!"