I am a tall person.
Ever since my first day of kindergarten all the way to graduation day, I have always been the tallest girl in my class. My legs have not fit under a desk since fourth grade, I stopped wearing heels in eighth grade, and I was creepily hit on by a guy in his thirties when I was a sophomore.
And without fail, the first comment I get whenever I meet someone new is, “Wow! You’re tall!”
I have spent years trying to think of the perfect response to this statement. I have toyed around with:
“Wow! You’re observant!”
“Really?! I never noticed!”
“I just thought everyone else was short.”
But I usually settle on a simple “Thanks” and a change of subject.
Despite the daily annoyances, being tall does have its advantages.
- I can always reach things, and people ask me to reach things for them.
- I always know my spot in a choir – back row and center.
- Whenever a teacher asks the class to organize ourselves from tallest to shortest, I instantly know where to go – no confusion whatsoever.
- People always think you are older.
This last one is awesome. I have gotten dates and jobs because people thought I was “so mature” for my age.
I had to stop using the kids menu when I was 10, but I have been able to get whatever samples I want at Costco since I was 12.
But (and there is always a big but), there are times when the whole age thing is not all that it is hyped up to be.
It can be great for getting guys, but when you are a 14-year-old trying to survive at a dance and an 18-year-old asks you how old you are, things can get awkward fast.
I cannot tell you how many times I have lied about my age at church dances.
Another side effect of height that people do not always acknowledge: you terrify people.
Now, this can (and has – hehehe) come in handy on occasion, but there have been times when I have inadvertently scared people just by standing there.
Mom, you remember this story –
My mother and I went to go to her podiatrist appointment. As we sat in the waiting room, mom realized that she had worn high heels to the office.
Knowing that her doctor would not be pleased at her choice of footwear, she begged me to trade shoes with her. I reluctantly agreed and switched my flip-flops for her 6-inch platforms.
Not 30 seconds later, the nurse called my mother’s name.
They could not have sent out a punier nurse – she would have barely reached my elbow at my normal height, but in these monstrosities upon my feet, she she was David and I was Goliath.
As I passed by her, she – almost in slow motion – gazed from my feet all the way up until her necked craned to see my face.
She had a look of complete and utter terror in her eyes – as if I was a gargantuan demon sent to destroy her.
I didn’t know whether I should say anything to her – I was afraid she was going to faint or pee herself or something. I just walked as quickly as I could in my awkward footwear and hurried after my mother.
It’s situations like this one that have made me insecure about my height for years. Even though I deal with circumstances such as these on a daily basis, I would not give up my height for anything. I may cringe just a little when I see pictures of myself with my not-so-tall friends, but I am happy with how I look.
Before I tried to hide my height by slunching and slumping – now I own it and I rock it.
I may even start wearing heels again.
They are starting to put ads on our blog. We do not approve these and are not getting any residuals whatsoever, so I apologize for the content. I’ll see what I can do about it.