Annika Venter 2Name: Annika Venter

Age: 18

Where do you call home? I currently live in Cape Town South Africa.

Education: I am busy with my last year homeschooling.

What is your relationship status? I am single. I live with my twin sister and my mom.

What's a typical day for you? My day is very simple, I normally do school work, exercise, take my dog to the beach, go to physio and visit family and friends who live nearby.

How long have you known you are living with FA? I was diagnosed with FA at the age of 13. I was starting to show symptoms when I was 10 years old and struggled to find a diagnosis.

Are there any others with FA in your family? My twin sister also fights FA with me.

Annika Venter 3Describe your transition from walking to walker/wheelchair. The transition from walking to a wheelchair was a struggle but when there was only that option I remained hopeful.

What do you like to do to stay active and what type of exercises work for you to stay strong? I do yoga, physio exercises, swimming and ride my recumbent stationary bike.

Do you have any hobbies or special interests? Anything outdoors, listening to music, exercising, watching series, playing with my dog and spending time with family and friends interests me.

What is a good trick to make daily life easier? Staying faithful and hopeful makes my life a whole lot easier.

When FA gets you down, what do you think/do to feel better? When FA gets me down I think of how much worse I could be and have hope for the future.

What is one way living with FA has POSITIVELY affected your life? It increased my faith and changed the way I value my life.

What is a favorite motivational quote of yours? Two of my favorite motivational quotes are "for we live by faith not by sight" and "it does not matter what you look at it matters what you see".

Annika VenterWhat is a piece of advice that someone with FA has given you that encourages and inspires you? Keep fighting and stay positive.

What is the best advice YOU could give to a person "who has been newly diagnosed with FA? You were given this life because you are strong enough to live it.

What is the first thing you want to do when a cure/treatment to FA is found? When a cure comes I'm going to do everything I am able to do.

"I have FA but FA doesn't have me." What does this statement mean to you? How do you live your life in the face of adversity? It means to me that I may fall but it makes me stronger to get back up.

Tell us a little more about you..... I am a person that despite my disease try to be as independent as I can. Staying faithful has helped me in my struggle. I love music, series, movies and staying active. I am also a strong-willed person who never backs down from my difficulties. I also love to travel to beautiful places such as Namibia and enjoy watching and interacting with animals and nature.

ChristinHaun mtc sig 16