I’m Mona:) I am 16 years old from Los Angeles. In my free time I like to go to the city and hang out with my friends. I love spending time with my mom and going to the beach. I also love to travel and see new places. When I was 12 years old, I was told that I had minor scoliosis. The doctor told me not to worry because I guess it didn’t really mean much. Later, when I was 14, my curve had shot up to 24 degrees and I was told I had to wear a brace. It was a huge battle at first and I felt as if nobody really understood. My friends tried to make me feel better about it, but it didn’t really help. It wasn’t until about 1 year into my journey that I really understood what wearing a brace meant. By then, I had made my peace with it, and I was able to help others make their peace with it as well. My attitude changed to be positive and I reflected that on to others. I am now still wearing a brace but I’m at 4 degrees!
Meeting new people has always been one of my favorite things, especially when I have something major in common with them. I would love to connect with other girls who have scoliosis and who I can support. I think my real passion to be a leader started about 7 months ago. A young boy was starting his journey where I get treatment at. He was only 6 and was having trouble wearing his brace. His reaction was totally understandable, considering I was 14 and was struggling to wear my brace. I ended up running into him during lunch and I started a casual conversation with him just because I wanted him to feel welcomed. His mom then told me he was happy to have met me because he considered me an inspiration and a friend. He then went on to only listen to things that I would say and the doctors would often have to call me in to get him to do his exercises. It was then that I had realized my impact on a singular person. I felt so good in the moment helping that young boy, and I told his mom that he could call me anytime he wanted. From then on, I started helping other people take a more positive route on their journey and it inspired me to be a leader. My goal is to a create a family of people with the same challenges and struggles and make everyone feel supported and comforted.