All Children Must Grow Up...

Saturday, May 03, 2014

"All children, except one, grow up." -J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

Alright. I'm not Peter Pan. And I don't care to be. I see that growing up is necessary, and I see that there are many things about growing up that give it a meaning, a purpose, and even a little bit of excitement about it.

However, I am discovering that being a teenager is just so much more complicated than being a child... All sorts of things make this a difficult time in one's life, and I don't understand why I ever thought it would be cool.

Alright. I suppose I do. The increased independence and freedom that comes with being older is pretty nice. I like being trusted with bigger things, and that I am able to do more and go to more places on my own. (Not that I've ever been one of those people who wants too much independence or responsibility...)

Yet I can also see why C. S. Lewis called this "the silliest part of one's life" in The Last Battle. Because it really is. You're too old to truly be called a child anymore, but too young to be a full-grown adult. And did I mention how complicated things can get? Maybe- but it's so true, that it warrants mentioning more than once. For certain. 

When you get to be a certain age (usually after about fifteen or so) people start expecting you to be looking at colleges. Sure, three years may seem like a long time at the moment, but in reality, it goes by a lot faster than you might think it would. Which means that, in spite of still feeling "young and free" (or at least wanting to be), we start to feel pressure to get it all together and have a plan made out for ourselves.

All of the uncertainty and pressure to figure it all out gets so overwhelming. You feel like you need to have it all together and be ready to march off to college the minute you get that high-school diploma. But does anyone really know exactly how their life will go when they turn 18? Is it some magic number that turns you into an adult overnight? 

This is definitely something that I've been working on lately, because I'm starting to be more aware about what I plan to do when I grow up. I do hope to go to college and have a career, because there is so much that I am passionate about, and I want to use my passion to help other people. 

For a long time, I've wanted to be a nurse. Lately though, I've been entertaining the notion of becoming a physical therapist or physical therapist assistant. The slight interest in a different field means that I have to start looking at all sorts of things that I hadn't even thought about before. Good PT programs, what I want for my bachelor's degree, etc.

It's so much to process. So much that you just have to get right. I mean, this decides the course of your entire life, doesn't it? Or does it...

At times, I want to go back to a few years ago and simply stay there. In a time and place where everything was simple, and black and white, and my biggest decisions involved whether to eat cereal or toast for breakfast.

But everyone must grow up. There's no way around it. So when I feel anxious about what the future (or even the present) holds for me, and when life just seems full of unnecessary complications, I take a step back. Take a deep breath. And remember who's really in control.

(This song made me cry even when I was super little. Now, I just don't listen to it...)

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