I have a question in regards to the pen tool. Is there a way to shorten the directional handles after selecting the anchor points? I noticed that when the handles get really and even when I drag them, the pen tool is not creating the shape that I want. Any advice? Thank you.
I am not exactly sure what you mean, but the length of the directional handles directly relate to the curve of your shape. So if you have a rather small curve, the handles will be shorter than a larger curve. This is just the way that bezier curves work and there isn't a way to make the handles shorter without impacting the look of your shape.
But you said that you are not getting the shape you want, so this is just a matter of properly learning how to use the pen tool. You can correct the shape using the direct selection tool (white arrow). Perhaps this will help: