Michiel Vandeweert delivers a powerful talk on the value of life, as he exerts a positive outlook as a way of living. Vandeweert is Belgian 19-year-old teen who suffers from a rare genetic disorder called progeria. Progeria accelerates the aging process at an incredibly fast rate and is unfortunately incurable. Being diagnosed with this disorder led the Vandeweert to enjoy life to his best ability. Despite the barriers that progeria builds around him, he bears nothing but positivity and hopes to share this with his audience and become a source of inspiration.
Vandeweert learned about his disorder at the age of five, and three years later -- his family finds out that his newborn sister also has progeria. At the time, the eight-year-old Michiel sheds light on the situation for his parents -- highlighting the positive influences he has met along the way and the benefits it can bring. Progeria encouraged him to live each day to his fullest, reminding himself to cherish loved ones and challenges. His loved ones surround him with support and encouragement and challenges push him further. Vandeweert did not let progeria stop him from achieving his dreams of being a DJ, obtaining a drivers license, and getting a job.
Vandeweert expresses to his audience that life can be bluntly unfair, but there isn't a place where a loving family, wonderful friends, and exciting challenges can't take them -- to not complain about incapabilities, but instead, showcase our capabilities because life is too short to not make the most of it.