Some insecurities are easy to hide, but it’s difficult to hide my long arms and legs, my big feet, and the fact that I am more than six inches taller than a lot of my friends. I’ve always been tall for my age, but I’ve never felt out of place in my family because my dad’s 6’ 3”, my mom’s 5’ 7” and my 16-year-old brother has now passed me up at 6’ 1” and counting. Even so, since 7th grade I’ve dealt feelings of insecurity about being tall. I am used the topic of my height coming up in daily conversation. At 5’ 11’’, people who haven’t seen me for a while will ask if I’ve grown, people will tell me that I make them feel short, or others will make the brilliant comment: “wow, you’re tall”. I know that they say these things with no bad intentions, so I just smile and say, “No, I haven’t grown” or “Yes, I know I’m tall”, but it can make me feel a little awkward.
I wonder what it would be like if people didn’t ask how tall I was. Sometimes I wish I was shorter so people would remember me for my personality as opposed to for my appearance. It is frustrating when people assume I would want to be a model just because I’m tall. I love the art of photography and modeling, but I have my own dreams and aspirations that have nothing to do with my body or appearance. I am passionate about theater and acting, and I hate that my height has been a determining factor in some casting decisions. I think that I am insecure about my height because it is something that I can never change, but I will always do what I love even if my body doesn’t always look the way I want it to. My height has also made me more insecure about other parts of my body, even though I know, for example, that my thighs need to be bigger because my legs are longer than my friends. I want to be healthy and happy, so I try to compare my body to my friends’ as little as possible. Being tall, I’m also insecure about being the tall girl one in pictures, feeling pressured to take into consideration the height of guys that I like, wearing high heels, and finding clothes that fit.
I feel really lucky for all my positive tall role-models and friends in my life who have encouraged me to stand tall and be proud of my height. Who I am is so much more than my height, but I am happy about the progress I’ve made with accepting my height as a positive part of who I am.