Prom is a special night for many high school sweethearts. But two teens from Leawood shared an experience that brought a whole new layer of meaning to your typical prom date.
When planning for her senior prom, Liddy Anstoetter knew exactly who she wanted to go with. She took Graham Rider to her senior prom last year, with Graham returning the favor the following year. The teens met each other when they were 11 at the Paley Institute at St. Marys Medical Center, West Palm Beach, Florida.
Liddy and Graham were both born with a form of dwarfism called achondroplasia. This a condition leading to short stature as well as limb deformity. The teens bonded after both undergoing limb-lengthening procedures. According to Liddy, “they break your bones and put metal rods in your legs.”
Over the years, the two have been able to relate to each other through their painful ordeals. Their shared experience has even brought the teens’ families together. Liddy’s mom told reporters that “they have a unique bond that we don’t even understand because they go through things that we don’t get.”
Graham agrees with Liddy’s mother, sharing her sentiment that the two have a unique bond. He said that “she perfectly understands me without a doubt. She probably knows me better than I know.”
Since her series of surgeries, Liddy has made considerable progress in life. Now she is able to perform everyday tasks, including driving. But she, along with Graham, believe that their friendship is what ultimately helped the healing process over the good part of the last decade.
Now aged 18, Liddy is finally living the life she wanted to and her development came full circle when she got the chance to wear a beautiful green dress to her prom.
And after all the long, painful hours spent in hospitals, Liddy and Graham got the chance to celebrate together during one of the most exciting evenings of their teenage years.