Why do people keep telling me I’m small?

Being 4’11 ( AND ¾ ) was not on my list of life’s goals as a child,

Me as an average height 4 year old.

and yet.. here we are.

I don’t think I go one day without hearing “ OMG you’re so small”, “How tall are you?”, “I didn’t realize you were that short”, “Are you shrinking” blah blah blah. From family to classmates to co-workers, it is a broken record. But honestly, I think they all just need glasses (sorry for all my dear loved ones reading this. I mean no harm.), but seriously, I wear glasses and I still don’t see what you all are seeing.

Thing is my height may be lower than average, but so many other attributes make up for it. Of course, there were times when I felt insecure about my height. Thinking I wasn’t as attractive as other girls or feeling like I looked like a little kid all of the time, when I wanted to look grown & sexy, not “cute”. Yet, for the most part, I always wondered why I never felt as small as people made me out to be, or why they felt the need to remind me every day. No exaggeration, I really and truly feel “tall” most of the time. I don’t ever think about my physical height limitations because my attitude reaches far beyond my physical appearance. Passion and drive will make a person walk “tall”. I mean don’t get me wrong, being short can get annoying. At 22-years-old, I still have to jump or climb the kitchen counters to reach things, 6-year-old kids think I’m their age, and the chances of me winning America’s Next Top Model are slim to none. But when I look in the mirror, I can’t imagine seeing myself any way else. Lets quickly list all the wonderful advantages I have:

  • I can curl up on the plane
  • I can fit in small places ( closets, lockers, etc)
  • I can convince people to carry me
  • I always have more space
  • I’m closer to the ground if I drop something or fall
  • I don’t have to duck under things, for the most part
  • I can disguise myself as a 10-year-old if I ever need to
  • I wear kids sizes ( cheaper! ayyyeee)
  • I get to be in the front of all the pictures

If I was any taller, I’d fear for mankind. I mean some of the smallest things in life do the most damage anyway (*cough* to men’s hearts *cough*).

But on a lighter note, I make it a personal goal to walk the way I want every young woman in this world to walk. With their head held high, shoulders back, and quick strides of determination because we have places to go, lives to change, and a world to progress.

So to all my fellow Reinas who are constantly told how “short” or “small” you are, just know your height doesn’t define you nor limit you. Remember the poetic words of the unparalleled Maya Angelou:

“I walk into a room

Just as cool as you please,   

And to a man,

The fellows stand or

Fall down on their knees.” – Maya Angelou, Phenomenal Woman

You don’t have to walk like you have anything to prove, walk like people have to prove themselves to you. People will tell you-you’re short forever, yet Shaquille O’Neal has nothing on you boo. Plus that’s what camera angles are for.  


As my line sisters would say… Thank you for coming to my TED talk.