50 Adjectives of Beautiful: The Story of Lizzie Velasquez

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By T. V. Antony Raj


The stares are what I’m really dealing with in public right now, … But I think I’m getting to the point where instead of sitting by and watching people judge me, I’m starting to want to go up to these people and introduce myself or give them my card and say, ‘Hi, I’m Lizzie. Maybe you should stop staring and start learning’.”
Lizzie Velasquez


Roget’s 21st Century Thesaurus defines the adjective “beautiful” as “physically attractive” and has a host of synonyms:

admirable, alluring, angelic, appealing, beauteous, bewitching, charming, classy, comely, cute, dazzling, delicate, delightful, divine, elegant, enticing, excellent, exquisite, fair, fascinating, fine, foxy, good-looking, gorgeous, graceful, grand, handsome, ideal, lovely, magnificent, marvelous, nice, pleasing, pretty, pulchritudinous, radiant, ravishing, refined, resplendent, shapely, sightly, splendid, statuesque, stunning, sublime, superb, symmetrical, taking, well-formed, wonderful.


Medical journals and men’s magazines publish photos of women, but the pictures would be aesthetically pleasing differently because of their unrelated motivations. Though the journal is more revealing, the magazine has the allure.

Roget’s Thesaurus defines the adjective “ugly” as “unattractive” and has synonyms:

animal, appalling, awful, bad-looking, beastly, deformed, disfigured, foul, frightful, grisly, gross, grotesque, hard-featured, hideous, homely, horrid, ill-favored, loathsome, misshapen, monstrous, not much to look at, plain, repelling, repugnant, repulsive, revolting, uncomely, uninviting, unlovely, unprepossessing, unseemly, unsightly.

Born in San Antonio, Texas, Lizzie Velasquez, four weeks premature weighed just 2 pounds 10 ounces (1.190 kg), and she has a rare genetic disorder. She has no adipose tissue to create muscle, store energy, or gain weight. The doctors told her parents that their child would never be able to walk or talk, or live a normal life.

Only two other people throughout the world have a similar ailment. Lizzie does not have body fat and weighs a mere 63 pounds (28.58  kilograms). At the age of four one brown eye started clouding and now blind in that eye, she and has only limited sight in the other. However, the syndrome did not affect her two younger siblings.

Despite what the doctors said, she thrived. Though her body is tiny, her bones, internal organs, and brain developed normally. However, she has no fatty tissue to store nutrients and to have enough energy to get through the day she has to eat every 15 minutes or so.

When Lizzie was in high school, an 8-second-long YouTube video, now removed, dubbed her as “The World’s Ugliest Woman.” Some YouTube viewers called her “it” and “monster” and asked her to kill herself. The horrible comments stung Lizzie. Even so, she read each one and dismissed them saying, “they are just words.”

“Living with this rare syndrome I know first hand what it’s like to be bullied. But I will be the first to say there is hope and it does get better!” says Lizzie.

Despite an ailment that should have killed her before she was twelve months old, Lizzie, now 23 years old, is a senior majoring in Communications at Texas State University in San Marcos.

During the past seven years, she transformed herself into a motivational speaker with more than 200 workshops to her credit addressing: uniqueness, coping with bullies, and surmounting obstacles.

Lizzie Velasquez
Lizzie Velasquez

She also writes. In 2010, she published her first book, “Lizzie Beautiful“, and released her second, “Be Beautiful, Be You“, on March 1, 2012.

“Some days life doesn’t make sense,” she writes in “Be Beautiful, Be You“. “You just have to change what you can, ask for help and pray about the rest.

“I feel really glad that I don’t look like the celebrities out there that are so beautiful,” Lizzie told Dr. Drew Pinsky in an interview on CNN’s Headline News. “There are a lot of stereotypes attached to that Not looking like a supermodel gives people the opportunity to know you personally,” she explains.

“I’m human, and of course, these things are going to hurt,” she said. “Their judgement of me isn’t who I am, and I’m not going to let these things define me.”




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