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Aimee Mullins

  • American athlete
  • Born 1976

Aimee Mullins (born July 20, 1975) is an American athlete, actress, and fashion model who first became famous for her athletic accomplishments. She was born with a medical condition that resulted in the amputation of both of her lower legs.


Belief in oneself is incredibly infectious. It generates momentum, the collective force of which far outweighs any kernel of self-doubt that may creep in.




I want to be a Bond girl. Think about it - I have metal components in my legs, so when I go through airport security, I set off the alarms. But when they realize why I'm beeping, they let me through. What if I had weapons in my legs? I could take one off and pull out an Uzi! Legs Galore - that would be me!




A couple of years ago, I had my DNA sequencing done, and it is all anonymous. When the results came back, my musculature type said, 'most likely to be a sprinter.'




I have learned not to overlook the advantages of being me. From when I was a softball player, and I held the stolen bases record. I would slide into second with my prostheses, and the girl on the base could either step aside or meet two wooden sticks.




Giving up is conceding that things will never get better, and that is just not true. Ups and downs are a constant in life, and I've been belted into that roller coaster a thousand times.




Life is about making your own happiness - and living by your own rules.




If you watch any John Hughes film of the eighties, that was my childhood experience.




I haven't had an easy life, but at some point, you have to take responsibility for yourself and shape who it is that you want to be. I have no time for moaners. I like to chase my dreams and surround myself with other people who are chasing their dreams, too.




The best beauty secret, besides sleep and plenty of water, is do whatever it is - before you go out, before you need to feel beautiful - do whatever makes you feel confident. If it's putting on a great dance record and rocking out in your apartment, do it. If kissing someone for 10 minutes makes you feel confident, do it.




People presume my disability has to do with being an amputee, but that's not the case; our insecurities are our disabilities, and I struggle with those as does everyone.




I've said this before, but I believe more than ever that confidence is sexier than any body part.




True beauty is when someone radiates that they like themselves.




Beauty is not skin-deep; it can be a means of self-affirmation, a true indicator of personality and confidence.




I didn't see how wearing prosthetics was quite so different from being born with flaming red hair in a crowd of black-haired babies, or being of a different religion from that of every other child in your area.




The idea of prosthetics is a tool. Most people's cell phones are prosthetics. If you leave your cell phone at home, you feel impacted by not having it. It's an important part of your daily function and what you can do in a day.




I hate the words 'handicapped' and 'disabled'. They imply that you are less than whole. I don't see myself that way at all.




I've had journalists asking me, 'What do we call you - is it handicapped, are you disabled, physically challenged?' I said, 'Well hopefully you could just call me Aimee. But if you have to describe it, I'm a bilateral below-the-knee amputee.'




I'm not an advocate for disability issues. Human issues are what interest me. You can't possibly speak for a diverse group of people. I don't know what it's like to be an arm amputee, or have even one flesh-and-bone leg, or to have cerebral palsy.




You know, I think there are certain words like 'illegitimate' that should not be used to describe a person. And certainly, we have come far enough in our technology that our language can evolve, because it has an impact.




I think that everyone has something about themselves that they feel is their weakness... their 'disability.' And I'm certain we all have one, because I think of a disability as being anything which undermines our belief and confidence in our own abilities.




I'm not running around as a continual ray of sunshine. It's just I don't believe in wasting time feeling sorry for myself. Get over it.




At some point in every person's life, you will need an assisted medical device - whether it's your glasses, your contacts, or as you age and you have a hip replacement or a knee replacement or a pacemaker. The prosthetic generation is all around us.




I like that Pilates compromises the mind and body. It's not just about being able to run around the block a few times. It's about alleviating stress and controlling breathing. It's about being balanced.




If we want to discover the full potential in our humanity, we need to celebrate those heartbreaking strengths and those glorious disabilities we all have. It is our humanity and all the potential within it that makes us beautiful.




Adversity isn't an obstacle that we need to get around in order to resume living our life. It's part of our life.




It's society that disables an individual by not investing in enough creativity to allow for someone to show us the quality that makes them rare and valuable and capable.




Whether it is your height, your weight or your skin, someone is going to pick on something and make fun of it. My legs were just a more obvious target.




For me, I never ever felt the ownership or any identity with any community of disabilities. I didn't grow up being told that I was a disabled child.




I don't know what it's like to be an arm amputee, or have even one flesh-and-bone leg, or to have cerebral palsy. I don't speak for such huge and diverse groups. What I've tried to do, what I've been fortunate to do, is to live my live and create my life as I've wanted to create it.




In athletics, the idea of possibility is presumed. It's not 'if;' it's 'how.'




Kids are naturally curious about what they don't know, or don't understand, or what is foreign to them. They only learn to be frightened of those differences when an adult influences them to behave that way and censors that natural curiosity.




If you would ask me at 15 years old if I would have traded prosthetics for flesh and bone legs, I wouldn't have hesitated for a second. I aspired to that kind of normalcy back then. But if you ask me today, I'm not so sure.




We all bullet point our triumphs, but I am who I am because of everything you don't see on my CV. The stuff that doesn't work out teaches you how to trust your instincts and adapt.




I'm not an advocate for disability issues. Human issues are what interest me.




I grew up in a town with a great wrestling tradition. Then I was a team sport queen in high school; I played softball, volleyball, and soccer. Oh, and I also did ski racing.




My varying pairs of legs can be quite practical or quite impractical, and I don't judge them either way. Some are for getting around a 12-hour day, pounding the pavement, and some are to feel like I can transform my own body into a workable, changing piece of art.



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