About Kingston’s Short Stories: In this series, I’ll be sharing one story from every year of my life. The stories may at times seem mundane, but its these day to day occurrences that define us. A lesson is then pulled from each story.
“This Ain’t Fair”
When I was 16, I was really unhappy with my body. At that point, I had become more conscious of what I had and what I didn’t. One of the things which I lacked was height.
I was 5’4 (well almost ) and I noticed I was shorter then most of my peers. I had been this height since my earlier teen years and at first going into high school it wasn’t all too noticeable as many freshman boys are really early in on puberty so there were a lot of guys shorter then me. By junior year though, things changed. I hit puberty early so it didn’t seem likely I would get another growth spurt.
I got real insecure about this and bought these hiking boots (well my mom bought them) hoping it would give me a little boost.
“Shall We Break Your Legs?”
Still I wanted to do more, so I did countless hours of research on the human growth hormone and the like. Eventually I came across different programs that claimed to increase a person’s height. One such involved going to China to get your legs broken and lengthened by forcefully pulling it so the bones would be stretched when it healed.
“No thanks” I thought to myself.
Then I found another option, an ebook containing a 2 month course dubbed to the realms of “growing taller for idiots” only $49.99 it advertised, I hopped on it.
Basically it outlined a diet and exercise program which I followed diligently. There were certain days you could only eat certain meats and as my parents still dictated my diet, I refused to eat some of my food without explanation, much to the frustration of my mom and dad.
I was also instructed to drink certain smooth blends so I would buy my own food from the grocery store and used my family’s blender. It was an old blender that was really loud, so loud my dad turned off his hearing aid to block out all the noise I was making.
I’m terms of exercise, I jumped rope five days a week after school. I hoped that all of this would be enough.
But at the end of the 60 days, nothing. I was the same old height. Well, there goes time, money and effort.
And I remember in my 11th grade history class, my teacher brought up the term, “there’s a sucker born every minute.” I sank a little in my chair. I had blown 50 bucks plus all the food purchased and time spent all on some ebook promising it will add height.
In the end, I didn’t grow any, I’m still the same old 5’4 even now.
What I Take Away
People produce practically everything imaginable on the internet, most of the times it’s not true, especially when it all seems too good to be true. Buy from a reputable website, or have multiple verified sources to ensure its validity.
The other thing, I learned is this: You play with the hand you’re dealt. Sometimes you get a bad hand for one aspect of your life, quite often though, you get just the one hand, no second chances. So you just find a way to make it work.
Like height, past a certain age your body stops growing, so putting your mind on something you don’t control is akin to stepping on the gas pedal alongside the break. But once you focus on the tools you do have at your disposal, that is when you find how to utilize it at its highest potential.