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I am the mother of a 2-year-old boy with achondroplasia, which is the most common form of dwarfism. Not knowing anything was the scariest part. Nothing can ever prepare you for when the doctor says there’s something wrong with your child. From that day on our lives have never been the same. Now it’s just joy. He has been born into the best family and he has ... You know, no one looks at him differently. He gets treated the same, he gets disciplined the same, it just makes me happy just thinking about him, you know. Yarraka Bayles. Mother of Quaden Georgetown Jr. Birri Gubba Nation.

Photography by Belinda Mason.

This little man just lights up our lives. It would be hard to imagine life without this boy – he’s just beautiful. We have never seen a black small person in the First Nations community. He’s an amazing little man. And I keep saying to him, you’re going to grow bigger. You won’t be as big as your dad, or as big as Pop or your mum, but you will grow bigger and you will be able to drive a car, play soccer or football or ride a motorbike. You will be able to do those things. It’s just that you’re going to be shorter in the arms and legs. But it’s interesting, watching him grow up and thinking ahead. About what might be in store for this boy, what life’s going to be like, life’s challenges, the discrimination, the taunts, the racism. All of that. But he’s going to be well grounded in culture and identity and that is where his strength is going to come from.

Tiga Bayles

Chairman, National Indigenous Radio Service