Cool Girl: Claire Wineland says "It's Just a Disease"

While I was lazily eating my Frosted Flakes last Saturday morning, I flipped on the TV and a pretty girl's face appeared -- wearing an oxygen tube. Her name is Claire Wineland, a 14-year-old from Los Angeles, CA, who has been battling cystic fibrosis since she was born. Cystic fibrosis produces very thick mucus linings, especially in the lungs, which can lead to infection and organ failure. In her short life, Claire has had 25 surgeries and endures several lung treatments a day. Last year, she was in a coma for two weeks. Doctors gave her a 1% chance of living. Poor, poor Claire, right? Wrong.

Feeling sorry for her is exactly what Claire doesn't want people to do! As she says herself, and her winning personality displays, she is a very happy person; her illness hasn't deterred her from enjoying and appreciating the life she has. After recovering from her coma, she founded Claire's Place Foundation, a non-profit organization that supports families living with cystic fibrosis. Despite CF being the leading fatal genetic disorder, most funds go into finding a cure, but Claire's Place aims to help those living with the disease.

Claire is truly wise beyond her years and an inspiration to everyone who meets her. Watch her TED talk and see this amazing young lady in action.

PS-Pura Vida has even made a Claire's Place bracelet ($5) that donates $1 to her foundation, so show your support!