Story of 17in high Mom
Marie was just a few days old when doctors gave her mum Ann the devastating news she had brittle bone disease, osteogenesis imperfecta. The condition, which means her body doesn’t produce enough collagen – the ‘cement,’ which provides bones with strength and flexibility – means she can break an arm just reaching for a cuppa. As an added complication Marie also had a twisted spine, respiratory and heart problems.
Marie as a little girl with her mom
Miraculously she did survive. By the time Marie was eight she’d had so many fractures she was confined to a wheelchair. However she went to mainstream school eventually leaving to work as a school receptionist.
It was through work when in 2002 she met Dan who had come to school to talk about planets to pupils for a science lesson.
Dan said: “Marie had a great sense of humour and we just clicked. After a while I didn’t notice her disability.”
In June 2013 the pair finally wed – announcing at the reception they were expecting a baby via a surrogate.
Marie-Andrews finally married with Dan Andrews
Marie said: “It was a wonderful home birth and I was the first person to hold Mark.”
Toddler is twice as tall as his mum at just 19 months old
“From the beginning I’ve always had a personal assistant to help me care for Mark at first we had one but now I have three who come in on different days Monday to Friday while Dan’s at work.
"Obviously there are things I physically can’t do. When Mark was a baby someone had to lift him and bring him to me. Now an assistant needs to change his nappy, lift him into his highchair and strap him into a car seat.
“It is agonising for me too that I can’t run after him or quickly pick him up if he’s fallen over.
“But as he grows older he I can call him to come to me. And there is a lot I can do. I always feed him myself, read to him and spend hours playing with him. I can follow him around in my wheelchair and I can drive myself.