Sometimes I look over my life and see patterns that emerge, things that repeat over and over again.

One of them, sadly, is the fact that I look nearly ten years younger than I am. The time, as a high school freshman, I was volunteering at the elementary school and got asked whose class I was in. My boyfriend at BYU who was teased relentlessly about dating a middle school student. The lady at the grocery store who wouldn’t give me a sample. The lady at Sam’s Club who wouldn’t give me a sample. (Maybe I should stop asking for samples?)

Last week, in the bathroom at work, a mother who works at the school, told me how much her daughter likes me. A warm glow settled on my heart.

She followed it up with, “And she thinks you must be really really smart.” Oh, how my ego was soaring.

“Because you have to be really really smart to finish college when you’re only in eighth grade.”

Rinse, repeat. Thank heavens I do not work in a high school.

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  • Reply Tina's Blog November 25, 2009 at 1:35 pm

    Someday you will be very glad for your youthful looks….people used to tell me I looked young or refer to me as a girl. However, I have been able to find some gray hairs lately and no one has told me I look like a girl anymore. Sigh.

  • Reply Kelly J. November 25, 2009 at 1:53 pm

    I laughed. Loudly. Sorry, Janssen!

  • Reply Melinda November 25, 2009 at 2:11 pm

    LOL! The "no-free-samples" is what did it for me…up until that part I was nodding sympathetically…that sucks to have a challenge that other people would welcome!!! Sorry 'bout that.

  • Reply Sherry November 25, 2009 at 2:56 pm

    Did you say, "Oh yes, I am indeed very gifted!"? Because I think you should just play up the child genius bit.

  • Reply Karina November 25, 2009 at 3:15 pm

    Haaaaa ha ha. That's awesome.

  • Reply the Danosaur November 25, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    I get this all the time too, but not quite 10 years…more like 5. Which is why the girls at church have taken to calling me "Juno" (since I look like a pregnant teenager). And there was the time I was 22 and tutoring at a high school and the hall monitor came up to me and told me to get to class. And…the time last year I got asked to dance at a youth activity I was chaperoning… the list goes on. The consolation is always that "you'll appreciate it someday," right?! Anyway, at least I don't get denied samples! That is hilarious.

  • Reply Jess November 25, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    Maybe someday you'll be happy about this? Like in 50 years?

  • Reply TheMoncurs November 25, 2009 at 4:07 pm


    Oh my youngling pocket sized little friend. I will have wrinkles so much sooner than you.

  • Reply Packrat November 25, 2009 at 4:07 pm

    Someday you will be happy about this – except that when you are pregnant and then when you become a grandmother. I think I mentioned before about all the nasty comments I received when I was pregnant with my first child. (Remember that was back in the "dark ages".) Now, I get the "you sure must have been young when you became a grandmother" comments. GRrrrrrr.

    Random: the word verification is oldinge – old lol I know I'm a geek.

  • Reply Chrissie November 25, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    Oh my goodness, how I can relate! I have similar stories of being denied things or asked if my parents were around, when in reality I am a 27-year-old married woman who only LOOKS like I belong in high school. I know we will someday appreciate it, but for now I just feel bad for my poor husband who often gets funny looks… However, I AM glad to know I'm not the only one. 🙂

  • Reply Nicole November 25, 2009 at 4:57 pm

    I taught physics in a high school last year, and I got asked for my hall pass a couple of times…I also got told to get back to my seat when I went to chaperon an assembly.

    We also had a speaker come to one of our staff meetings. I was impressed with some of the things he said, and so I went up to thank him for coming, especially since this was in Utah, and he's from New York.

    "Look at this one!" He exclaimed loudly to everyone standing around, "Shouldn't you be getting on the bus?"

    So much for thanking a fellow teacher for insight. Suddenly I was the kid who might as well have said, "I am SUCH a big fan!"

    It's amazing how you can go from feeling like an accomplished adult to a shy teenager in an instant.

    Also, whenever you talk about your job, I picture Ms. Honey from Matilda. How could your students not adore you?

  • Reply Shelly November 25, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    LOL! That is awesome. Yes, you will definitely appreciate your youthful looks as you get older.

  • Reply Jenae November 25, 2009 at 6:10 pm

    That's terrible! Wait 'till they find out that your married too. That should raise their eyebrows a a little.


  • Reply Chelsea November 25, 2009 at 7:47 pm

    You know, I've had that problem to a certain extent. It used to really drive me crazy. I was complaining about it once and grandma and mom both told me that one day I would appreciate it! They were right. I do. I still get mistaken for younger, but now it's a positive thing. Now people thing I'm around 26! You have that to look forward to! It must run in the family huh? My Mom and Grandma both have that problem too.

  • Reply melissa @ 1lbr November 26, 2009 at 1:16 am

    My husband and I both have the baby-face curse. I haven't been mistaken much for being that young, but, I do have the nice privilege of looking about the age of my early-twenties college students 🙂

  • Reply Bean November 26, 2009 at 4:25 am

    It's weird now, but I'm willing to bet when you're 40+, you're going to LOVE this trait! I don't think you look like an 8th grader, though! 🙂

  • Reply megan November 29, 2009 at 11:42 pm

    Don't worry. It won't stop soon. Even though I was outside with my kids the other day, someone came up to the house to deliver a voting pamphlet and asked me if my mom was home. It wasn't the first time, and I am pretty sure it won't be the last. So if it's still happening to me at 30, I am sure I will only be grateful when I look 35 at at 50. I hope. I hope you are too!

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