To all appearances, Aeisha Ross is a bright, attractive 14-year-old with an exciting future ahead of her - she is all of those things but a life-long medical condition has made it hard for her to feel "normal."
Aiesha was born without an anus or rectum, uterus or ovaries, one kidney and spinal nerve damage so that she required major surgery in the first few hours of her life.
A video of a recent speech made by the Wanganui Girls' College student has had thousands of views on Facebook and YouTube since her older sister posted it this month.
The topic set by the school was "What Teenagers Need" and two days before she was due to give her speech, Aiesha had not decided what her angle would be.
"I suggested to her that she should talk about her own unique situation and tell others what it feels like to live with her condition," said mum Louise Elliot.
"She just went for it and told it how it really is, she was so brave and I'm really proud of her."
The title of Aiesha's speech is "The New Normal" and she explained her condition and talked about how teenagers need to feel normal but normal for others is something she has not been able to experience.
"Sleep overs, school camps and swimming are all normal activities for you but not for me - I can't go on a school camp unless I have a parent or teacher assigned to care for me," she told her peers.
She also talked about bullying in the speech.
"We are so caught up in the old normal that we can't see that a snarky little comment could end someone's life," said Aiesha.
At the end of her speech, she proposed a "new normal" where people are accepted and even celebrated for their differences.
Aiesha has had to travel to Wellington for surgeries every year of her life and said they usually mean from two days to a week away from home and school.
Mum Louise said her daughter has missed quite a bit of school over the years but teachers have been really good at helping her keep up.
"I was worried that when she got to high school she would fall behind but thankfully she has only had one surgery this year and she is doing well."
Aiesha is a middle child in a family of seven and her mum says it has not been easy to keep everyone's schedules going but the family maintains a conventionally chaotic routine with the usual sibling rivalries.
Younger sister Natalya, 12, is a student at St Anne's School where she excels at sports and is used to being the "star" in the family.
Aeisha's time in the limelight due to the popularity of her video prompts a fair bit of face-pulling and tongue protrusion from Natalya while her sister is being interviewed.
Rivalry aside, it is obvious that the whole family, including younger brother Isaiah, 9 are proud of Aeisha's courage.
What would Aiesha say to a younger child who is living with the same medical condition?
"I would tell them that it is not their fault and they should not feel ashamed of their condition or let anyone bully them.
"Being different is no reason to feel that you are not normal."
-To watch Aeisha's speech online go to youtube.com/watch?v=oHzju7FP5F8&feature=share