Stand tall, be proud of your height

The average height for men in America is 5’10” so, being a girl that stands at 5’9” I have felt the need to make myself look as inconspicuous as possible for much of my life. Starting at a young age I felt insecure about my height. I grew like a weed and expected all of my friends to do the same, but they didn’t and soon I was towering over the other girls.

For formal events ballet flats were my shoes of choice. I rarely wore skirts because they instantly shrunk several inches in length when I put them on. I would watch all the smallest girls in the class get picked up and hugged by other students knowing that, even if I wanted to be in their place, it would be awkward if it were me.  I thought that the other, shorter girls were dainty and cute whereas I was the girl the boys asked to play kickball with them.

In my mind I saw myself as the biggest, tallest, most gawky girl wherever I went. I didn’t want to be the girl that was asked to help carry a stack of textbooks to the library, I wanted to be the small and ‘feminine’ girl. As a young girl with the height of a grown woman, I was always afraid that boys wouldn’t like me because I was so tall. I worried that I wouldn’t be able to wear cute shorts and skirts without them looking borderline provocative.

The mentality that I was somehow less girly or appealing than the other girls because I’m tall followed me until very recently. I decided that if I’m lucky enough to be tall, I might as well embrace it and make the most out of the situation.

Wearing high heels is something I do on a regular basis now because the taller I am the better I feel. I’m so proud of my height that when someone says to me, ‘You’re so tall’ I reply with a ‘Thank you.’

I wish I could go back and tell my younger self, “Don’t be so fixated on your height. The only person that is worrying about you being taller than other people is you.”

Everyone is talking about loving yourself, no matter what your size, but I feel like this more often in reference to weight, not height. Women of above average stature deserve to feel cute and confident, just like women of any other height. Tall girls, love yourselves, you deserve it.