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Nikki Valdez Proud of Daughter for Rising Above Her Physical Disability
PHOTO BY @nikkivaldez_/Instagram
To read this story in Tagalog, click here.
  • Actress Nikki Valdez turned sentimental in her Instagram post four days ago, which marks her daughter Olivia Ysabelle’s birthday month. She wrote a touching message to accompany a photo of a 4-year-old Oy (her nickname).

    “I certainly will never forget this year (2012) because it was around this time that you have started to realize that you were different from all the children you meet specially your classmates,” the mom of one began her caption for the photo.

    Fans and followers of Nikki would know that her daughter, who is turning 11 in two weeks’ time, has a congenital condition called symbrachydactyly, which is usually characterized by missing fingers or toes. In the case of Olivia, it is her left hand that is affected.

    According to Wikipedia, symbrachydactyly occurs in 1 in every 30,000 to 40,000 births.

    Furthermore, the website says, “The cause of symbrachydactyly is unknown. One possible cause might be an interruption of the blood supply to the developing arm at four to six weeks of pregnancy. 


    “There is no link to anything the mother did or did not do during pregnancy. There is also no increased risk of having another child with the same condition or that the child will pass the condition on to his or her children.”

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    In an April 2018 post in time for Limb Difference Awareness Month, Nikki expressed her pride in having a daughter like Olivia, despite the initial concerns she had.

    “I still vividly remember how worried I was for her but at the same time, her hand doctor’s words echoed in my heart saying, ‘the best option is to change her diapers three times a day, feed her daily and give this child all the love and care in the world for what I see in front of me is a very smart and beautiful baby.’ That’s exactly what my family and I did.

    “Today, Olivia is an incoming 4th grader in a regular school, an achiever in all that interests her, has learned how to do things with her baby hand, is a very active and cheerful little girl and continues to be the sunshine in our lives,” she added.

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    In her recent Instagram post, Nikki continued, “You even asked, ‘Mama, when I get to Kinder 2, is my hand going to be bigger too?’ I did not know what to answer as I was caught by surprise by your question.”

    Despite her condition, Olivia is a bright and jolly girl, even helping out Nikki with her passion project: her Miss Buttercream baking business, which the actress started in 2015.

    Olivia sometimes helps man the booth when her mom joins bazaars, and we’re sure she’s also a very willing tester of Nikki’s recipes!


    Just like other girls her age, Olivia likes to dance, sing, and to dress up, oftentimes even twinning with her mom. The mom-and daughter duo make an adorable pair.

    This betrays the fact that Nikki and Olivia have also gone through some very hard times after Nikki and her ex-husband — Olivia's father — separated in 2010. Several years later, Nikki has found love again in the person of Luis Garcia, whom she wed last year in a simple ceremony in Hong Kong.

    Olivia was one of the happiest with the turn of events because not only has her mom found her happiness, she now also has a ‘Dada’ who loves her like his own.


    In the comments, Nikki thanked all those who left messages of support for her daughter. “I am celebrating my daughter through my posts and releasing never seen photos and videos of her and not sad about her inborn condition,” she said. 

    She finished her caption by saying, “My love, you may have a ‘baby hand’, but I know that as you get older, you will achieve great things because of your big heart. Remember that we love you no matter what.”

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