When kids of his age play around and have fun, this “old” child struggles with his aching joints and other physical ailments. Fully aware of his degenerative condition, he tries to keep silent—but then, as a kid, often breaks into tears.
Bayezid Hossain, lives on the outskirts of Magura, southern Bangladesh. He suffers from Progeria, extremely rare genetic disorder in which symptoms similar to aging manifest at a very early age.
The little boy’s face is swollen, eyes are sunken and he has a condition that makes his skin sag. Like an old man, he has aching joints and has difficulties passing urine. His bones are fragile and his teeth are broken, yet, Bayezid still has an active mind.
Purely out of ignorance, people in the community don’t like to go near him and kids are afraid to play with him—despite his above average intelligence, and a kind nature.
His 18-year-old mother, Tripti Khatun, says her son is very intelligent and she is amazed at all his questions, but it breaks her heart that he is so ill and that his appearance drives people away.
“Bayezid only learned to walk aged three but he had a full set of teeth at three months old,” she told the Daily Mail.
“His physical growth is completely abnormal but mentally, he has wonderful conversation, very aware and is very intuitive for his age,” she said.
“He does not look like other children. He looks like an old man. As a first time mother I can’t bear the pain of seeing my child like this.”
On an average, Progeria patients usually die from heart attacks or strokes around the age of 13. Bayezid also has a form of a rare connective tissue disorder, which causes the skin to hang loosely from the body.
Bayezid was born in 2012, his parents were in total shock when they saw him for the first time.
“I was terrified to see him when he was born. He was just flesh and bones. He looked like an alien and it was heartbreaking for me. Doctors had no idea what to do, they said they had never seen such a baby. They warned us that there was nothing they could do,” Tripti said.
His 22-year-old father, Lovelu Hossain, who works as a laborer said, “I am proud of him. He is extremely intelligent compared to other children of his age. His relationship with his cousins is very friendly and funny.”
“He understands his condition but he doesn’t like to talk about it. He just cries when he feels awkward,” he said.
For third world countries, where poverty is already a big concern, such rare cases add extra financial burden on poor families. His father has already spent most of his savings for his disorder that has almost no cure.
“Like every other parent, we want our baby to live a long and healthy life but we feel only a miracle will save us now,” his father said.