13 May 2011

They Say I'm a Shrimp

This is one of many prompts that are stored on my computer from various sources such a friends, life, and websites before I knew that I should keep up with their URLs.

How tall are you? Have you liked this height? Why or why not?

I am four feet, ten and three-quarter inches tall...or, rather, short. I've always said that I stopped growing in the fourth grade. In reality, I have no idea how old I was when I stopped upward growth.

People used to tease me for being short. Their teasing hurt my feelings and I spent a lot of time crying over it. Mama tried to help. She told me to ignore the people and eventually the teasing would stop. I wasn't any good at ignoring the taunting, and even the few times that I tried it, it didn't put them off any at all.

I grew to hate my height. I felt "less" than everyone else and, in addition to everything else that seemed to be "less", to make me less beautiful than the other girls, I had a self-esteem that was even smaller than I was. I felt worthless, ugly and useless.

One day, someone had occasion to be mocking my height and they did this in front of my grandma, a woman who I took after a great deal. Grandma and I were about the same height. Grandma told my aunt "she is just fine the way that she is. God made her that way." My grandma grew to way over six feet in my eyes at that moment. She was always a beautiful woman in my eyes and will always be.

In high school, one of my teachers especially tried to be an encouragement to me, tried to help me to feel better about myself. He treated me like I was worth something, not less than the other people. He told me "great things come in small packages." It is an over-used phrase, maybe, but it meant so much to me at that point in my life. Here was this man, a teacher, telling me that yes, I was a person of value, a sentiment that a couple of other teachers had tried to impart on me, but for different reasons than my height (or lack thereof).

Now, at age forty-five, my height isn't so much a thorn in my side. I have come to accept it and to realize that there are more important things to be concerned about than being able to see over the tops of everyone elses' heads. Heavenly Father made me this way. He made me a carbon copy of my grandma and I can't think of a more beautiful person to favor than my grandma. I am her "mini-me" and my youngest daughter is my "mini-me". Grandma lives on and I am happy that Heavenly Father made me the way that He made me.
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Shrimp picture source: WikiMedia

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