I Am A Lot Of Things, So Please Stop Seeing Me As Just A ‘Midget’

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I’m a lot. 

A lot of pain.
A lot of past trauma.
A lot of playing small.
A lot of anxiety.

woman with dwarfism stands in white dress smiling
Courtesy of Adam Dooms Photography

I get caught up in my emotions very easily. And I assume people are passing judgment on me all too often. 

My expectations for others and myself have a tendency to be higher than my legs are long. I spread myself thin and under appreciate the art of doing nothing. 

I’m usually between a 7-10 on the emotional scale and have feelings so volatile I can essentially cry on command. 

woman with dwarfism holds crutches while at medical center
Courtesy of Kristen DeAndrade

I’m a lot. I know I am. 

A lot of love.
A lot of grit.
A lot of grace.
A lot of brave.

woman with dwarfism sits on floor looking down at her legs
Courtesy of Chelsea Gates Media

I’m loud. I talk with my hands and if I’m really passionate about something I can barely sit still. I swear, a lot, and acquired my choice vocabulary from my dad who is the epitome of a Bostonian. I am an author and an advocate who uses my voice to educate society and share my story to erase boundaries and eradicate stereotypes. 

woman with dwarfism looks over her shoulder
Courtesy of Adam Dooms Photography

I’m a lot. And here is what I’m NOT. 

I am not a midget.
I am not someone to mock or laugh at.
I am not a source of entertainment.
I am not weak.

woman with dwarfism plays with bubbles
Courtesy of Kristen DeAndrade

The pointing, laughing, staring, photos, comments and unwarranted actions from others get old and they can be downright exhausting. I don’t need to be reminded that I’m different. I’m aware that I live with a disability. I am tired of society demanding something from me other than who I already am. 

My name is Kristen. I am a woman living with achondroplasia. I have little legs and a big heart. I am a lot.”

woman with dwarfism holds hand out with #notamidget on it
Courtesy of Adam Dooms Photography

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Kristen DeAndrade. You can follow their journey on Instagram and Facebook. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.

Read more from Kristen here:

I Am More Than A Person With Dwarfism, I Am Kristen

Read more stories like this:

‘What’s it like being a little person?’ I was touched without my consent and forced to apologize. I was so naive.’: Woman with Achondroplasia urges ‘I’m not a little person, I’m not a dwarf, I’m just Chandler’

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