By Federico Cornetto
A young woman who used to grow her hair to cover her ‘weird’ eye, has embraced it and shared pictures of it to thousands on social media.
Pernilla Beatrice is a law student from Rome, Italy, suffers from an extreme case of corectopia, a condition which means her eye’s pupil has a distorted shape and is at the bottom of the iris instead of at its centre.
Recently, the 22-year-old posted a picture of her ‘weird’ eye on social media, where it received thousands of comments from astonished users.
Pernilla said: “I used to grow my bangs until they covered my eyes and I would refuse to sweep them off my face.
“In primary school, my eye was just a cool thing that I could show my classmates, but then later in middle school it became a target of bullying, and kids can be cruel.
“I just stayed silent about it and hoped that no one would notice, however, at some point everyone does.
“It got all kinds of reactions, from staring and screaming to sweet words and amazed looks, but the more I grow up, the more of the latter I receive.”
While she’s never met anyone else in real life with the same condition, Pernilla has found some people online with similar eye distortions such as coloboma, but never with a pupil quite like hers.
Pernilla said: “It’s an extremely rare condition, if you search it on the Internet there are little to no results, just a couple of lines on a few medical webpages.
“My case is also pretty extreme.
“The pupil is quite small and distorted, while in most people that have it, the condition is apparent as only a slight displacement.
“I was born with it, my parents told me how, when I first opened my eyes, they noticed it right away and told the doctors.
“In a few minutes, half of the hospital’s staff were looking at my eyes, my parents were worried because none of the doctors had seen anything like it before.”
Pernilla also admits that most people have now positive reactions of surprise and fascination to seeing her eye for the first time.
The young student says life with corectopia has not always been as easy, but she has now fully embraced her unique eye, even refusing to undergo surgery to correct it.
Pernilla said: “I was depressed for many years and I’m still struggling to love my body.
“But I learned to love my pupil, as weird as it might sound, I would never change it and I wouldn’t try to fix it with surgery, it’s part of me and it’s something that has been with me all my life.
“As a kid I hated reading, with my bad vision and the added difficulty of being dyslexic, it was one the hardest things for me to do, but I kept going because I loved the stories.
“Now I want to become a novelist, I want to read every book that I can with my weird, unique eye, and I want to do that while loving myself.”