My View From Down Here, Part II


I hope you’ve read Part I…if not please do before reading Part II. I mean, lest you think I start off all conversations telling you about my toned calves…. 😉

I don’t tire of hearing compliments on my toned legs. Maybe it’s karma or payback but without any deliberate effort on my behalf, I’ve got some envious calves. You would too if you spent the last 45 years standing on your tippy toes to reach stuff, wearing heels and habitually speedwalking to keeping up with taller friends and their longer legs.

I don’t tire of hearing adults announce, as if it were either a bad thing or the shocker of the century, the blatantly obvious, “Wow. Your kids are taller than you!”  Look, I cried for joy the days each of my children surpassed my five-foot frame.  Up until then I feared my son would be short like me and my daughter as tall as her father. While other moms bemoaned that inevitable day—thinking inches equaled kid power over parental power—I rejoiced that my main gamble for marrying my six foot one husband paid off.

Yes, I’m 45 and finally okay with being “short” or “Petite”  or whatever you want to call it. Unless it’s “vertically challenged” because that’s just dorky and ridiculous. Because as happy as I am with the way I look at my age, I absolutely, will always tire of hearing adults, like their predecessors of 40 years ago, ask, “Why are you so short?”  Or the more contemporary, “Have you always been that short?”

I don’t walk up to complete strangers and ask, “Have you always been that fat?” or “Why are you so fat?” And guess what—I have no control over my height. That was determined for me. By Someone you really don’t want to tease.

Oh, and one more thing along the lines of tactless, potentially hurtful comments. I’m talking to all you well-meaners of the world: “Good things come in small packages!” is incredibly an annoying cliché and does absolutely nothing to boost the ego of a child, teenager or adult (who’s heard the phrase ad nauseam all her life). Unless while you’re saying it you’re handing me a small box of big diamonds. Or a stash of chocolate I don’t have to climb on the counter to reach.

Copyright 2011 Karen Rinehart


About Author

Karen J Rinehart is an award winning newspaper columnist, author, speaker, wife, mom and dog owner—all crammed into a fabulously petite frame. See her in action on