Aisha is a doubly special tot!

Proud dad Imran Fazil with his daughter one-year-old Aisha Siddiqa born on the leap year day of Feburary 29 last year

Proud dad Imran Fazil with his daughter one-year-old Aisha Siddiqa born on the leap year day of Feburary 29 last year

First published in News Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Photograph of the Author by , City Hall Reporter

Aisha Siddiqa is a very special tot, for two reasons.

Not only was she a leap year baby, she has also managed to escape a lethal genetic disorder which tragically claimed the life of her older brother.

Her parents Imran Fazil and Sehrish Rasool, of Manningham, Bradford, suffered a personal tragedy when their first child Abdullah was born with restrictive dermopathy, a disorder affecting the lungs, bone and skin, and died a month later.

They were then told that as they were both carriers of the genetic disorder, any other children they had would have a one in four chance of developing the same terminal condition.

But last year, Mrs Rasool gave birth to Aisha on February 29, and she was given a clean bill of health by medics.

Mr Fazil said when they had been told their due date was the leap day, he saw it as a good omen.

He said: “I saw it as a blessing. When the doctor produced this as a date for the delivery, I told my wife, ‘You have got to deliver on this day!’ “When we had the first child, my wife had to be taken to hospital seven months into the pregnancy and when the child was born we found out he wasn’t well.

“It was shocking, the first child is usually the spoilt child in our family. It was really, really hard, it was hard for my wife especially as she had to go through all the pain. She went through a lot.

“This time, we were just hoping everything would be fine. They checked up on Aisha straight away and said everything was perfect.

“I just want to say it’s a blessing to have a healthy child. I would tell anyone else in this kind of situation just to stay positive and keep going.

“I also want to compliment the NHS. They have done so much. If you look at what people in poor countries have to go through, I really appreciate everything there is in this country.”

Proud dad Mr Fazil said there was a third reason his daughter was extra special – her piercing blue eyes.

He said: “In our tradition, blue eyes and green eyes are so special because we don’t really have a lot of people with blue eyes or green eyes.”

Aisha’s birthday was being celebrated by her family today, though it will be 2016 before they can mark the occasion on February 29.

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