You see, as the world stepped into chaos, something extraordinary was happening. One woman went into labor, but while everyone was expecting a normal-looking baby, it looked like a creature from an unknown planet. This baby had a nonhuman nose with whiskers and a thick tuft of fur. The doctors weren’t sure how this baby came into existence. Meanwhile, another mother in the same hospital gave birth.
But then doctors realized it was also not a baby. Even though it resembled one. It looked like something else, too a monkey. No one dared show it to the mother because they had seen nothing like this before. What was happening in this hospital and where were these strange babies coming from?
The big question on everyone’s mind was, how could these babies even exist? Were they the results of a virus or the result of some failed experiment? As more of these hybrid babies started popping up left and right, it still wasn’t clear what had started this rare phenomenon. Scientists believed it was the deadly virus that had wreaked havoc on the world last year. A lot of people had died from it, but those who survived and went into hiding in the woods weren’t quite the same.
When it was safe to return home, they emerged looking slightly different and acting different. These were the parents of the hybrid babies. And because nobody knew what came first, the virus or the hybrids, people feared them. But as more and more of the hybrids emerged from the woods, how could society not accept them? They were part human.
After all, the way they looked was not their fault. It was a confusing time for people and hybrids alike. After some time had passed, people started to be more open to the idea of living with hybrids. A brave mum who also had a unique looking baby with a beak and wings made an appearance out in the open as this mom strolled with her infant through the city, different reactions graced the faces of onlookers. Everyone who saw the odd looking child stop what they were doing just to have a better look.
As expected, some didn’t even bother giving them a second look. They turned their faces away immediately. I have never seen anything like that, one person said. Others wondered if the child acts like other normal babies. However, while there were some negative reactions, some people, even other kids found the hybrid baby really cool.
I would stand for him because it’s not right to belittle people because they are different, one teenager said. If he was mine, I would pamper him and take him around the world, another onlooker said. As you can see, some people are shocked, while others are more welcoming. The thought of hybrid animal babies. And while human animal hybrids might seem like beasts from a fairy tale and in this case are totally fictional, the story of a Mermaid girl is no myth.
She existed in real life and even thrived but how would that even work? A hybrid is created with a combination of sperm and eggs from two different species. On the other hand, a chimera is essentially a single organism that comprises cells from two or more individuals. That is, it contains two sets of DNA with the code to make two separate organisms. So if a chimera is a single organism that’s made up of two sets of DNA, would a being that’s part fish and part human be considered a chimera?
In theory, yes. But does such a thing like a Mermaid exist in real life? To be honest, we don’t know. But there is something in real life that comes really close to this. Have you heard of Mermaid syndrome?
Also known as Siren Amelia? Just like the mythical Mermaid, this recognition in humans is still unexplained by researchers. They believe the exact cause of Mermaid syndrome could be environmental and genetic factors that play a role in the development of this disorder. Although most people who suffer from this condition barely live beyond birth, one Mermaid girl, Shiloh Peppin, defied the odds. When Leslie and Elmer fell pregnant, they were over the moon.
But that joy was short lived after a scan detected that their unborn daughter could have Mermaid syndrome, but they proceeded with the pregnancy since there was no way to be sure until their birth. However, ever since the diagnosis, all the excitement this couple had grew wings and was replaced by fear. They weren’t even certain if they could love the girl, if she had such a physical defect. If she had it, we were worried that we wouldn’t be able to love her, Leslie said. So for the rest of the pregnancy, they remained despondent.
In due time, Leslie went into labor and lived with a girl, Shiloh Peppin. Unfortunately, the doctors were right. Shiloh was born with her legs conjoined. But something very beautiful happened immediately after her parents set their eyes on her. They loved her intensely and accepted her difference.
When Shila came out, she had the biggest blackest eyes. We thought she was very beautiful regardless, Elmer said. Now that accepting her was out of the way, they were desperate to do anything so she could survive. She had so much life and energy in her eyes, and they didn’t want all that to go to waste. Unfortunately, the doctors bluntly told them her condition was fatal.
So Leslie and Elmer prepared to say their final goodbye. You see, other than being born with fused legs, shallow had other critical health concerns. She was born missing a whole series of organs, including her bladder, large intestine and uterus. Besides, she had nevaginavolt rectum and no way to get urine out of her body. Her case was so serious that the doctors were certain she didn’t stand a chance.
But something beyond everyone’s imagination was about to happen immediately after Sheila was born. Everyone expected her to pass shortly after birth, but as hours rolled by, she remained in good health. When her parents saw this, they let go of every fear they had and acted fast. Leslie and Elmer quickly rushed Shiloh to Barbara Bush’s Children’s Hospital, where she met one doctor, Matthew Hand. When this doctor looked at Shiloh, he saw a little girl who needed help, unlike others who had only seen her as a medical case that wasn’t certain.
He then asked her parents what they wanted for the girl. We just wanted to spend most of her time at home. We would be glad if she can live for as long as possible, the Doting parents explained. When they were done, the doctor was moved with compassion. He saw just how much they loved the girl.
As for Shiloh, she had a beautiful smile on her face. All alone, the doctor could tell she was meant for something big and he pledged to do everything to save her. But at three months, Shallow’s kidney failed and she began dialysis. This little champ eventually had a kidney transplant at age two and since then has also had over 150 surgeries. You see others who had been diagnosed with Mermaid Syndrome undoing surgery to separate the legs.
But this never happened in Shyla’s case, as her parents kept debating the risks involved regarding this. By the time she was done with required surgeries, this youngster became an entirely different kid. Leslie and Elmer saw a part of her they had always known existed. She became quite energetic and proved she was only born different. And other than that, she was a normal kid who could do the things other kids also did.
Shiloh took ballet classes and participated in dance rehearsals, wondering how she pulled off such a feat. Well, this vibrant girl danced by scooting her body across the floor. She was a very happy child with a lot of love to give and receive. She had a commendable relationship with Leslie. Each time Leslie returned from work, Charlotte was always downstairs waiting to welcome her, happily chanting Mummy is back.
It was one of the most beautiful things ever, Leslie said. Not only was she close to her mum, but she also had a great relationship with her dad. The two swam together and Elmer never missed the opportunity to crack Shallow up with his jokes. She would always say, you crack me up, dad, with tears of laughter in her eyes, Elmer said in an interview. This sweet Angel’s birth defect didn’t stop her from living her life to the fullest.
She had plenty of friends and even brought them over to the house. I think Shiloh had more in her ten years of life than a lot of people have in 50 70 years. I am proud that she lived on her own terms. She would often say, I could be a Princess or a movie star. I believe she could have been anything likely said.
You see, this girl had every reason in the world to be bitter, unhappy and miserable, but she is the exact opposite. She is happy, vibrant and accepted herself the way she was. Shiloh lived every day, inspiring everyone around her to embrace themselves the way they are. Just because we are different doesn’t mean we can’t be anything we want to be. Shallow often said.
Sadly she passed away in 2009 at the age of ten. After briefly battling pneumonia. History would never forget this youngster who chose to shine her little light. Stories like this are a constant reminder to never wait till we have have everything. We want to be happy.
There will always be tough moments, but you can choose to get up and fight like this brave little Mermaid girl. How do you interact with people who are different.