Meet Hasti

Hasti Momeni was never expected to walk, but she’s now up on her feet and kicking goals.

The bubbly 13-year-old, who suffers from spondyloepiphyseal dysplasia, has been subjected to 19 surgeries but is slowly defying the odds.

The congenital abnormality has affected Hasti’s bone and joint development since birth, meaning she has struggled with all movement and physical activity.

“I feel like it’s affected me in many ways, but especially in my social life,” she said.

“Many of my friends hang out after school together but I can’t … because of my legs. It’s pretty sad because I’m by myself a lot of the time.”

But thanks to the tireless work of The Royal Children’s Hospital, the Pascoe Vale teen is closing in on her goal of walking without crutches.

“It was horrible. There were so many nights where I couldn’t sleep. I didn’t think I would ever walk,” Hasti said.

“My main goal is to one day go to school without crutches.”

Her mother, Masoumeh, said she still could not run, jump or walk properly.

“But at least now she’s on crutches and been given a chance by the hospital,” she said. “I see what they have done for us through the years, they’ve helped us and it means a lot.”

Originally published in the Herald Sun, 31 March 2021
Words: Brigid O’Connell
Photo: David Caird