Hey, you—did you know that .004% of American females are over 6’3”? That means there are only about 6,000 of them throughout the entire country! As 1 of those 6,000, I have been inspired to share part of my own My Giant Life story; at least that’s how TLC puts it.
Let’s start with middle school. A time of change, transformation, and awkwardness for all of us. Boys start sounding like, well, boys. Girls get boobies; and for me, well, I got 7 inches taller.
I became the “tall girl”; it was my defining factor. It was how I was described, seen, and remembered. At first, I hated it. I wanted to be remembered for my personality. I wanted to be the funny or nice one, not the tall one. But as the years went on, I learned to embrace my height.
Being a 6’5” female is WHO I AM and I wouldn’t change it for the world. My height has provided me with skills, stories, and relationships that I would have never received by being “normal.”
Like many of you other tall folk out there, I also enjoy relating to the #tallpeopleproblems posts and discussions. I feel all y’all, it’s how we live our lives. But I am tired of focusing on the negative effects of the extra inches. It is due to this attitude that I am constantly being asked if I even like being tall, or the ways in which being tall makes my life harder. In an effort to change this perspective, here are 10 ways in which being 6’5” in a 5’5” average world has made my life better:
1. It gives me an excuse to eat…A LOT!
I love food. Half the time I swear my life revolves around it. But hey, I burn more calories moving these long limbs, right?
2. Group entertainment purposes.
If you have a vertically gifted friend and haven’t played the “Let’s walk 10 feet behind them and count how many people double take” game, then you should try it; it’s a favorite among my friends. If you have already played that one, try wagering on “How many tall comments your friend can get in a day.” P.S. Both make for incredible drinking games…
3. You receive the “Celebrity Treatment” when out in public.
Every time I walk, well pretty much anywhere, I receive endless amounts of stares, double takes, and random conversations with strangers over whether I play basketball or volleyball. This was always a struggle for me during my teenage years, but since then I have changed my perspective and learned to embrace the extra attention. When people run into a wall because they are too busy checking if you’re wearing heels or not (yes this has happened), take it as a compliment. You are unique and people find you fascinating.
4. I can dunk…well, almost.
It was a combination of basketball loving parents, height, and athleticism that launched my incredible basketball career. I owe a large piece of who I am today to the sport and am so thankful for all it has blessed me with.
5. “Here, you can have shotgun.”
Thank you to everyone who has bettered my life with this phrase.
6. I can reach…EVERYTHING!
7. I am the person everyone at a concert is either jealous of or mad at.
But hey…I can see perfectly and my people use me as a marker to find their way back. I also enjoy the gaping hole behind me; gives me some extra room to stretch my meter-long legs.
8. Awkward silence? I always have new stories to tell.
Someday I would be happy to share the story of how I became an attraction at the Louvre in Paris. Believe me, you want to hear that one.
9. Free stuff.
I have received drinks, jewelry, clothes, flowers, etc., simply for being an awesome giant. Sometimes these items are given in exchange for a photo, but that’s basically free, right?
10. It’s why I am who I am.
Don’t get me wrong—accepting my height has been a lifelong challenge, but by overcoming these challenges I have become more confident, outgoing, and happier than a lot of the average-sized folk out there.
There is purpose in each of our differences. We are meant to learn from these differences. Embrace all that makes you unique. It is what makes you, YOU. Don’t strive to be average; average is boring. Be weird, crazy, dorky, and different. Be New. Be True. Be You.