As my boyfriend likes to say “I don’t know what your problem is but I bet it is hard to pronounce.”
Every once in a while he is spot on. The name of my problem is achondroplasiaphobia. It is a fear of midgets. I know midget is a politically insensitive term. So achondroplasiaphobia is a fear of little people. Go ahead. Have a good laugh. But don’t be offended when I giggle like a school girl because you are losing your mind over a snake or spider.
The reason I bring this slightly embarrassing problem of mine to the world’s attention is that I have struggled greatly with it this past week. Normally, it isn’t an issue. Sure, I’ve had to leave a few restaurants before I got my meal. I’ve had to kamikaze across a busy street or just have a flat out panic attack in a random public area, but never ever more than once or twice a year. Last Wednesday, it happened four times just trying to walk one block up the street. Sweating, humiliated, and slightly desperate I ran (and I seriously mean my woefully out of shape self RA HA HA NNNN!) like a crazy person back to the safety of my office building without lunch and discovered that the Little People of America National Convention was taking place in downtown Nashville.
Dear Gods. No one told me. Apparently somebody (Ahem. You know who you are.) knew and neglected to tell me. He confessed this with a smile on his face.
It is a good thing that I can handle being laughed at because it has happened bookoodles this week. I learned a thing or two about my phobia too. For instance, I didn’t know that a little person in a wheel chair made me panic twice as badly as a little person who was walking on their own. You tell me. I’m not afraid of wheelchairs. My Dad has spent the better part of the past two years in a wheelchair. I’ve never felt the need to run from him or anybody else in a wheelchair for that matter. Even I am saying WTF on that one.
Imagine a convention of snakes, spiders, or clowns coming to Nashville. That is what the past week has been like for me. And, by golly to all you politically correct assholes out there, I am not comparing little people to snakes. I have nothing against little people except that I am deathly terrified of them on a primal level for some unexplainable, insane, and absurd reason. I am simply comparing my fear to one a normal person might be able to identify with.
It isn’t like they are chasing me. I have never been attacked by a chainsaw wielding little person. I just break into a sweat, can’t breathe, and have a sudden and uncontrollable urge to run for my life. And trust me, immersion therapy doesn’t work. Really. It doesn’t work.
I feel like I should apologize, but since I am not doing it on purpose I am not going to. They can’t help that they were born little. I can’t help that I was born terrified of them. And I am aware it is much tougher being them than it is being me even during the National Little People’s Convention.
I am glad they still chose to bring their business to Nashville after the flood and I hope that they have had a good time. I just hope the next time they come back, I have some warning. Maybe I’ll find the People With Absurd Phobias Convention and go to that while they are here.
It has been a hell of a week.