This I Believe

Kyle - Springdale, Arkansas
Entered on September 14, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

I believe that size doesn’t matter. I am in junior high and barely over 52” (give or take a few). All my life I have been the human arm rest. It always hurt on the inside, but I shook it off with a laugh or a smile. My mother always told me that it makes no difference if you are short or small, just be who you want to be. This has become my life motto and this, I believe.

When I was born in Asia, my biological mother put me up for adoption. The Vietnamese people around there are all short, so it was genetics that made me small. Once I was adopted into America, there were these towering people all around me. When I was young in school, I was scared and truly intimidated.

School became easier as I started to make friends, and I eventually forgot about the size issue. Then some of my friends invited me to a birthday sleepover. When you’re young and in second grade, it isn’t cool to have to ride in a car seat. I felt like a dork and it wasn’t like they couldn’t help but notice. I could feel the stares from my friends. It seemed like I was a bug under a microscope. Immediately when my mom asked me how it went, I couldn’t talk fast enough about the most embarrassing moment of my life.

As always she reminded me that I was a special individual, and I don’t have to worry about others thoughts. Most people underestimate me at school, until they see me in class. My first and second grade was at a private catholic school. When I say private, I mean private. The first grade had a total of 30 people. This helped because not only were we challenged by a fast learning pace, but we learned at a small teacher-to-student ratio. We always had help whenever we needed it. This gave me a boost when I moved to public school. I had gone over half the material and could get 100’s or smiley faces quite easy. Whenever someone thought I was too short to be like everyone else in the third grade, they could see my work on the “Wonderful Work!” board. Their thoughts immediately change about me and they saw I earned my right to be with them.

I believe my belief isn’t just for me, but for everyone who is vertically challenged. All of us small people know that it’s nice every now and then to get a free meal on the 6 year old and under buffet. We will all face hard times, but believing that size doesn’t matter will make the difference from happy and sad times. I realize I won’t be a Yao Ming or a Michael Jordan, but I know I am unique and special in my own way. Size doesn’t matter and this, I truly believe.