Lydia is about to turn four and would like a unicorn for her upcoming birthday. When she gets older she is hoping to be a princess.

From the minute she was born, Lydia has been the most delightful daughter imaginable – clever, determined and relentlessly engaging. As a baby she was never very interested in sleep and always wanted to be close to her mum. Lydia began walking at 14 months and had developed incredible speech by 18 months. This is when her height started to slow down and by two, Lydia was considerably smaller than her friends. Lydia was diagnosed with pseudoachondroplasia at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, Australia in 2012.

As parents, it came as a huge shock. We had never heard of pseudoachondroplasia, had lots of questions and felt a lot of worry. The worry has eased but finding out more about the condition is a priority for us. This includes practical implications for Lydia’s life as well as continued research into pseudoachondroplasia.

Most of the time Lydia is busy doing everything a young girl should but sometimes she gets tired, falls over, complains her legs feel wobbly, that her ankles are sore and she needs help to walk. Sometimes she asks “When will my bones grow?” We are teaching Lydia to embrace her difference and find her own solutions to being small in a big world. However, at the same time, we are desperately hoping that research will help find ways to ease the pain of this rare condition so Lydia can get on with being Lydia.

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