You know, there are times when I miss being my old self. A careless little kid. I used to spin tales out of nothing and smile all the time. I couldn’t wait to get to school, woke up at 4 in the morning to pester Dad to take me to the park so I could play in the chilly winter mornings. I never allowed my parents to carry me around, I was always the restless kid who wanted to run around on her own in her tiny little shoes. Now, I just want to be that kid again. Do it all over. I want to be just as careless and restless as that kid. I want to be fussed over by Mum and Dad.
So, what exactly happened? Life. Life happened. I grew up.
I had to learn to adapt to any given situation from a very young age because we kept moving to different cities throughout. My first big change came when I was four and a half. My best friend, my partner in crime, my brother moved to Canada. I didn’t have a clue about how much I was going to miss him. Soon after he left, we had to move to a different city where the people spoke in a different language. But what would I know? I was only five years old when that happened. I had no clue how much more my future had in store for me.
“When we are children we seldom think of the future. This innocence leaves us free to enjoy ourselves as few adults can. The day we fret about the future is the day we leave our childhood behind.”
― Patrick Rothfuss,
See, when we were children, we didn’t know how tough breaking out of our safe little cocoons could be. Slowly, the metamorphosis took place. We changed. So did the world around us- in so many levels. Right now, I’m at that stage where I’m trying to break out of that cocoon. It’s time for me to get out there, in the real world. The more that I think about it, the more it scares me. Deep down, I’m still the little girl who needs Mum and Dad to tell her that everything is going to be okay.
When I was a kid, I couldn’t wait to grow up, travel the world, and finally be able to handle myself. Growing up, I found out, was a trap. It’s something I can never undo. Like Peter Pan says, “Once you grow up, you can never go back”. It’s not like I can Bibbity-Bobbity-Boo myself into being a kid again. It doesn’t work that way. And no matter how much I want it to be true, I don’t have a Fairy Godmother who could zap a royal carriage out of a pumpkin for me. I need to work for the pumpkin- I mean, ‘carriage’.
“Growing up happens when you start having things you look back on and wish you could change…”
― Cassandra Clare,
When we were kids, we thought that we would always be safe, sheltered. We had no clue about what being an adult was going to look like. And while it isn’t that bad, it isn’t exactly rainbows, either. Some of us might feel like things might get easier along the way, but they’re really not- unless you’re following your dream. And no matter how much you love what you do, it is bound to take a toll on you. The next thing you know, you’re buried neck-deep in work!
We thought we would grow up one day, get rich, get married and live in a big house. When we actually grew up, we got a reality check. Money doesn’t come by easy. You don’t get married to your high-school sweetheart. You go through a series of heartbreaks and betrayals until you finally find the one who is worth the wait. You think your childhood friends are going to be your constants- if they are, then you’re one of the luckiest people on the planet, because people like me who move cities so often usually drift apart (and I apologize for that).
“Maturity is a bitter disappointment for which no remedy exists, unless laughter could be said to remedy anything.”
― Kurt Vonnegut
Surely, none of us thought life could turn out the way it is. Being an adult, being a grown-up is hard. But it’s not so bad, either. With all the negatives, comes the ability to make decisions. We know what is right for us. We are wiser. Maybe we are a little scared, a little unsure where to tread. Scared to make mistakes. Scared of failure. Scared of not being able to find ourselves a position in this big, bad world.
But all we need is a little sunshine of a reminder that everything is going to turn out just fine if we don’t let our past get in the way. Fine, we made mistakes. But whether we learnt anything from them and rectified our errors, is what matters the most. So, it is not a pastel-coloured fairy tale. But the best tales are the ones that we have lived. Every single story in our lives is worth telling.
As much as we miss our childhood and look back at the way we thought things would turn out to be, somewhere deep down, we do look forward to our future. So, just keep swimming.
“I’ve found that growing up can mean a lot of things. For me, it doesn’t mean I should become somebody completely new and stop loving the things I used to love. It means I’ve just added more things to my list.”
So, take out some time. Go through some old photos of yourself. Sit down and watch the movies you used to watch as a kid. Visit places you haven’t visited since when you were a child. And when all of this is done, tell yourself that you’re ready to grow up and that you aren’t afraid of it anymore. Mean it when you tell yourself that you’re ready.
Your life has so much more to offer. And you’re going to love every bit of it along the way.
If you liked my article and could relate to it, do spread the love! Also, let me know what you think because your opinions matter a lot to me!