Remember Her? Prepare to Be Amazed by Lizzie Velasquez Today

Be Amazed by Lizzie Velasquez Today

Comparing oneself to others on social media can evoke feelings of confusion, jealousy, and inadequacy. This sentiment resonates deeply with Lizzie Velasquez, an anti-bullying advocate, who discovered that scrolling through timelines during the pandemic negatively affected her self-esteem.

Velasquez has been under the scrutiny of the internet before. In 2006, at the age of 17, a cruel YouTube video titled ‘The World’s Ugliest Woman’ went viral, subjecting her to widespread bullying. This period was particularly challenging for Velasquez, who was already grappling with a rare health condition.

Diagnosed with neonatal progeroid syndrome, which includes lipodystrophy and Marfan syndrome, Velasquez has faced unique physical challenges throughout her life. Lipodystrophy prevents her from gaining weight, while Marfan syndrome affects her connective tissue, resulting in distinct physical features.

Now 35, Velasquez reflects on her life, describing it as living in two different worlds. At home, she was surrounded by a loving and supportive family who treated her like everyone else. Her parents instilled in her a sense of optimism and confidence. However, school presented a different reality, filled with challenges and bullying.

As she entered high school, Velasquez began to understand her condition better. This self-awareness empowered her to embrace her uniqueness, make new friends, join the cheerleading squad, and contribute to the school newspaper. Despite her achievements, her self-esteem was shaken by the viral YouTube video, which tested her resilience.