True Story of Achondroplasia a Type of Dwarfism

True Story of Achondroplasia a Type of Dwarfism
©Nick Schwarz 2017

People come in all shapes and sizes and we’ve seen people who are average height, we’ve seen basketball players who are 7 feet tall and we’ve even seen people that are short. Even so, each and every person wants to be recognized for their true self and not for their physical self.

My race, gender, and height do not determine my character. This is true and while we may focus ending this issue today, there are other groups of people that we also need more information about and need firsthand testimonies and experiences about to break the awkwardness about them and focus on their character instead.

This is why I chose to interview a friend of mine named Nick Schwarz, who is a positive and great photographer who wants to be known for how he enjoys his life and not for a condition he has called achondroplasia.

The interview began with the question, “Think of an adversity that you have overcome, how did you accomplish defeating that challenge?” Nick answers:

A great adversity that I have overcome would have to be timing. It may be hard to find the right time to do something or say something, but throughout my life I’ve discovered that the best time to do it (anything) is now! Waiting just causes over-thinking and stress. A good quote that I live by is, “To do it today, because tomorrow isn’t guaranteed”.

I enjoyed listening to his outlook on life because it is this idea that I want to promote on Tru.Works; that no matter who you are and what you’re given you can live a life of happiness if you choose to do so. With Nick, I wanted to go deeper and luckily Nick chose to get more personal about his life.

Now for my personal story. The biggest adversity of my life has to be a condition I was born with. It is called achondroplasia, which is a type of dwarfism. It is the most common version, in which my arms and legs (limbs) are shorter than average.

I’ve been pointed at, stared at, and maybe even laughed at throughout my entire life. Overcoming this was probably the biggest challenge I’ve ever had. In middle school, I was around people I’ve known from elementary school, and that is when the teasing faded away. Nobody really cared about my condition and they just saw me as everyone else. This is mainly thanks to having 2 older brothers (Austin and Chris) by my side. They were the popular athletes of their class and they have really paved a great path for me to follow and here I am now, in high school and no one cares about how I appear anymore. Everyone likes me for my honesty, and my outgoing and happy personality. I truly believe that this is how somebody must always be judged, through their personality.

 What would be advice that you would give anyone with the same condition that may feel like they’re also being laughed at or pointed at?

The biggest piece of advice that I would give is to just keep moving forward. Don’t look back and don’t look at them. Be confident in yourself and don’t give a crap about anything offensive anyone has to say. Just remember the only person living your life is you and you live it how you want to. Not being altered by anyone

 What would you like to explain or bring up to attention to readers about achondroplasia?

Well, depending on the reader, whether it being a parent that has or is going to have a child with achonroplasia, or just a curious person, I would like to say that it doesn’t change the person as a person in any way. They are just a smaller person, but have the same sized heart- if not bigger. Be prepared for the condition by reading deeper to understand exactly what it is and also the chances of it.

You wrote earlier that one quote you live by is “to do it today because tomorrow isn’t guaranteed ” what is something you’ve done ‘today’ that turned out great? In other words, give me a real life example of how you personally lived by that quote.

A way I live by that quote is by truly living everyday to it’s fullest. Filling the day with happiness, admiration, love, and friendship. I see each day I live as a chapter of a book covering my life. Now, if you were to read a book right now, you’d want it to be interesting right? Well, that’s what I’m trying to do, make my life interesting and worth living. In result, I say what I want to say today and do what I want to do, end the chapter, then move on to the next. Every book has an ending, some are expected, some aren’t. What really matters is if you truly wanted to keep reading until the end.

Nick’s condition does not stop him from living a full life that inspires and empowers people to be what they truly are and accept themselves. No one is given the same deal when they’re born- it doesn’t give us an excuse to pout, be pessimistic, and not enjoy life. This is the lesson Nick has taught me.

I wasn’t born rich, I didn’t have the best education, and I’ve made many mistakes in my life but I keep pushing forward. I can only hope to make my books as interesting as Nick’s as my life progresses.

For anyone who would love to talk to Nick, he can be contacted on his Twitter account @ninjanick40 and enjoys conversation and sharing ideas and stories. I can say this because Nick has become a friend of mine that truly displays what it’s like to enjoy life every day.

A great article about achondroplasia is, “Achondroplasia”, by Rose Kivi who explains medically reviewed information about achondroplasia, its symptoms, and causes.

Finally, special thanks to Nick Schwarz and his wonderful inspiration and I hope we can work together again.

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